Atilax paludinosus 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Carnivora Herpestidae

Scientific Name: Atilax paludinosus
Species Authority: (G.[Baron] Cuvier, 1829)
Common Name(s):
English Marsh Mongoose, Water Mongoose
French Mangouste des marais

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2015-02-28
Assessor(s): Do Linh San, E., Angelici, F.M., Maddock, A.H., Baker, C.M. & Ray, J.
Reviewer(s): Duckworth, J.W. & Hoffmann, M.
Contributor(s): Hoffmann, M.
This species is listed as Least Concern because it has a wide distribution range, is generally common where there is suitable habitat, and occurs in several protected areas. There is no reason to believe that the species is declining at a rate fast enough to warrant listing in a threat category, and it does not meet any of the other IUCN Red List Criteria for even Near Threatened.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2008 Least Concern (LC)
1996 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is widely distributed from Senegal, Guinea-Bissau and Sierra Leone eastward to southern Sudan and Ethiopia and south to southern Africa, where it is absent from most of Namibia, Botswana and large parts of central South Africa, wherever adequate water and cover are unavailable (Baker and Ray 2013). It is present on Pemba Island, but absent from Zanzibar (Pakenham 1984). It has been recorded from sea level to altitudes of 3,950 m asl in Bale Mountains N.P., Ethiopia (Yalden et al. 1996). Wozencraft (2005) lists this species as occurring in Algeria, presumably an error as there are no confirmed records from this country (M. Ahmim pers. comm. 2013).
Countries occurrence:
Angola (Angola); Benin; Botswana; Burkina Faso; Burundi; Cameroon; Central African Republic; Chad; Congo; Congo, The Democratic Republic of the; Côte d'Ivoire; Equatorial Guinea; Ethiopia; Gabon; Gambia; Ghana; Guinea; Guinea-Bissau; Kenya; Lesotho; Liberia; Malawi; Mozambique; Namibia; Niger; Nigeria; Rwanda; Senegal; Sierra Leone; Somalia; South Africa; Sudan; Swaziland; Tanzania, United Republic of; Togo; Uganda; Zambia; Zimbabwe
Upper elevation limit (metres): 3950
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: It is generally common in suitable habitat. It was the second most photographed species in a camera-trapping study in the Udzungwa Mountains, Tanzania (De Luca and Mpunga 2005). In KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, the density was recorded at 1.8 individuals/km2 (Maddock 1988).
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: It is mainly restricted to riparian habitats (rivers, streams, swamps, marshes and dams), wherever there is suitable vegetation cover and water in close proximity. It may also be found along estuaries and in coastal areas. Sometimes it is found away from watercourses, though only for limited periods (Baker and Ray 2013). Diet comprises mostly aquatic prey with crustaceans often dominating, which is unusual among mongooses (Baker and Ray 2013, Do Linh San et al. unpublished data). However, in some areas rodents constitute the main prey in terms of biomass (Maddock 1988).
Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater
Generation Length (years): 4

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: The Marsh Mongoose is commonly found in bushmeat markets. It was the most common carnivore appearing in bushmeat markets in southeast Nigeria (Angelici et al. 1999) and was also commonly recorded in bushmeat surveys in the Classified Forest of Diecke, Guinea (Colyn et al. 2004).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are currently no major threats known to the species although hunting, habitat loss and encroachment by humans into its habitat are likely reasons for its declining population. Since it is dependent on riverine vegetation for shelter, the loss of this habitat may result in some localised declines where habitat loss is taking place (Baker and Ray 2013). The effects of water pollution on local availability of food resources and therefore Marsh Mongoose populations is unknown and would warrant investigation. The drainage of swamplands for conversion to arable land has been identified as a threat to this species in eastern Africa (Andama 2000).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is present in several protected areas across its range.

Citation: Do Linh San, E., Angelici, F.M., Maddock, A.H., Baker, C.M. & Ray, J. 2015. Atilax paludinosus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T41590A45204865. . Downloaded on 26 November 2015.
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