Marmota himalayana


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Marmota himalayana
Species Authority: (Hodgson, 1841)
Common Name(s):
English Himalayan Marmot, Karakoram Marmot
Spanish Marmota Del Himalaya

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Molur, S. & Shreshtha, T.K.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Cox, N. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
This species is listed as Least Concern in view of its wide distribution, presumed large population, it occurs in a number of protected areas, and because it is unlikely to be declining at nearly the rate required to qualify for listing in a threatened category.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is present in northwestern South Asia, and western, central and southern China. In South Asia, this species has been recorded widely distributed in the Himalaya of India, Nepal and Pakistan at elevations of 3,500 to 5,200 m asl (Molur et al. 2005).In China, it is found in Qinghai, Xizang, western Sichuan, Yunnan, Gansu and Xinjiang (Smith and Xie 2005).
China; India; Nepal; Pakistan
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species is often common.
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is adapted to alpine meadows, grassland and desert conditions with very low rainfall, typically inhabiting steep bush-dotted slopes and gentle slopes where soil can be readily excavated (Molur et al. 2005; Smith and Xie 2008). It lives in small or large colonies, depending on local resources (Smith and Xie 2008). They excavate unusually deep burrows, which are shared by colony members during hibernation. Litter size is reported to be two to eleven young, after a gestation period of one month. Females become reproductively active only in their second spring.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no major threats to this species as a whole. In South Asia, the species is locally threatened by hunting for food and medicinal use, mortality from domestic predators, habitat disturbance resulting from civil unrest, and overgrazing of its habitat by domestic livestock (Molur et al. 2005).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It is presumably present in many protected areas. It occurs in Annapurna National Park and three other protected areas in Nepal. The species is included in the Schedule II (Part II) of the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and listed in Appendix III of CITES (India). Survey, taxonomic research, limiting factors studies and monitoring are recommended (Molur et al. 2005).

Bibliography [top]

Ellerman, J. R. 1961. Rodentia. The fauna of India including Pakistan, Burma and Ceylon. Mammalia, Manager of Publications, Zoological Survey of India, Calcutta, USA.

Molur, S., Srinivasulu, C., Srinivasulu, B., Walker, S., Nameer, P. O. and Ravikumar, L. 2005. Status of non-volant small mammals: Conservation Assessment and Management Plan (C.A.M.P) workshop report. Zoo Outreach Organisation / CBSG-South Asia., Comibatore, India.

Roberts, T.J. 1977. The Mammals of Pakistan. Ernest Benn, London, UK.

Smith, A.T. and Xie, Y. (eds). 2008. A Guide to the Mammals of China. Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey.

Thorington Jr., R. W. and Hoffmann, R. S. 2005. Family Sciuridae. In: D. E. Wilson and D. M. Reader (eds), Mammal Species of the World, pp. 754-818. The John Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, MD, USA.

Citation: Molur, S. & Shreshtha, T.K. 2008. Marmota himalayana. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 01 September 2015.
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