Crateromys australis

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA MAMMALIA RODENTIA MURIDAE

Scientific Name: Crateromys australis
Species Authority: Musser, Heaney & Rabor, 1985
Common Name(s):
English Dinagat Bushy-tailed Cloud Rat, Dinagat Hairy-tailed Cloud Rat, Dinagat Crateromys, Dinagat Island Cloud Rat

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Critically Endangered B1ab(i,ii,iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2008
Date Assessed: 2008-06-30
Assessor(s): Ong, P., Tabaranza, B., Rosell-Ambal, G., Balete, D. & Heaney, L.
Reviewer(s): Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Schipper, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)
Justification:
The species is listed as Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct) as the presumed extent of occurrence is less than 100 km2, with increasing habitat reduction. This species is known only from one individual and repeated surveys have not found it. There is a possibility that this species may be extinct.
History:
1996 Endangered
1994 Insufficiently Known (Groombridge 1994)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species which is endemic to the Philippines where it is known only from a single specimen collected between 1974 and 1975 (Musser et al. 1985; Oliver et al. 1993) from Dinagat island. The type locality is Balitbiton, Loreto municipality, Surigao del Norte Province, Dinagat island, Philippines (Musser and Carleton 2005).
Several teams of biologists have visited Dinagat briefly but specific surveys for this species have not been performed and the species was not located (L. Heaney pers. comm. 2006).
The species may occur also on adjacent islands, especially Siargao and Bucas Grande, where Podogymnura aureospinula, previously only known from Dinagat, is now known to occur. Local people on the nearby island of Siargao reported seeing an arboreal rat resembling Crateromys australis (Oliver et al. 1993) but this still needs to be confirmed.
Countries:
Possibly extinct:
Philippines
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: This species is known only from the holotype. Individuals of other Crateromys species are difficult to capture (L. Heaney pers. comm.).
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The holotype is from disturbed lowland forest, near a logging road. The species may be dependent on primary forest. It is not known whether this species is able to persist in secondary forest. The species is small for a cloud rat which occurs in the canopy.
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Dinagat island is particularly threatened by increasing levels of mining for chromite which occurs in ultrabasic areas. The species and habitat occur in an area which is negatively affected by local political activities. Deforestation is probably a major threat (Oliver et al. 1993) and a recent visit to the island showed that much of the forest has been logged (B. Tabaranza pers. comm.).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The area around the type locality is included within an Important Bird Area. Species specific surveys are urgently needed on Dinagat to determine its range there and also on Siargao and Bucas Grande islands to ascertain if it occurs on those islands. The species is likely to be forest dependent, given its arboreal nature, although the extent which it can persist in secondary forest is unknown. Surveys of this species could potentially be undertaken under the EIAs required for mining projects.

Bibliography [top]

Musser, G. G. and Carleton, M. D. 2005. Superfamily Muroidea. In: D. E. Wilson and D. A. Reeder (eds), Mammal Species of the World: a geographic and taxonomic reference, pp. 894-1531. The John Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA.

Musser, G. G., Heaney, L. R. and Rabor, D. S. 1985. Philippine rats: Description of a new species of Crateromys from Dinagat Island. American Museum Novitates 2821: 1-25.

Oliver, W. L. R., Cox, C. R., Gonzales, P. C. and Heaney, L. R. 1993. Cloud rats in the Philippines--Preliminary report on distribution and status. Oryx 27: 41-48.


Citation: Ong, P., Tabaranza, B., Rosell-Ambal, G., Balete, D. & Heaney, L. 2008. Crateromys australis. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 27 August 2014.
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