Friday 24 May
Mindanao gymnure (Podogymnura truei)
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Mindanao gymnure fact file
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Mindanao gymnure description
Gymnures are relatives of hedgehogs, but lack the prickly spines (3). Found only on a single island, the Mindanao gymnure, whose local name means ‘ground pig’, has long, soft, grey fur mixed with reddish-brown hairs on the upperparts. The underparts are greyer, with a few brown hairs, and the moderately long tail is buff to purplish. It has a long snout and well developed canine teeth (2).
- Also known as
- Mindanao moonrat. Top
- EDGE of Existence:
- A species or taxonomic group that is only found in one particular country or geographic area.
- Primary forest
- Forest that has remained undisturbed for a long time and has reached a mature condition.
- IUCN Red List (June, 2009)
- Nowak, R.M. (1991) Walker’s Mammals of the World. 5th Edition. The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore and London.
- Rondinini, C. (2006) Hedgehogs and Moonrats. In: Macdonald, D.W. (Ed) The Encylopedia of Mammals. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
- Stone, R.D. (1995) Eurasian Insectivores and Tree Shrews - Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan. IUCN, Gland, Switzerland.
- BirdLife International. (2003) Saving Asia's Threatened Birds: a Guide for Government and Civil Society. BirdLife International, Cambridge, UK.
- EDGE of Existence (October, 2007)
- UNEP-WCMC World Database on Protected Areas (October, 2007)
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Mindanao gymnure biology
The little-known gymnures are believed to exhibit behaviour that is more akin to the elusive shrews than to their spiky relatives; they move faster and dig less efficiently than hedgehogs (3). Mindanao gymnures are known to feed on insects and worms, and many of them have been lured into traps baited with bird flesh (2). The well-developed anal gland of the Mindanao gymnure produces an unpleasant odour, which is likely to assist in deterring predators (3)Top
Mindanao gymnure rangeTop
Mindanao gymnure habitatTop
Mindanao gymnure status
Classified as Least Concern (LC) on the IUCN Red List (1).Top
Mindanao gymnure threats
The fate of the Mindanao gymnure is intrinsically linked to the survival of the forests of Mindanao. The forests of the island have already been reduced to just 29 percent of what they were, after being destroyed by logging and the practice of slash-and-burn agriculture (2), and the remaining patches of forest continue to be degraded and destroyed. Legal logging operations continue in certain areas, where primary forest is being cleared and replaced with exotic trees for paper production. Illegal logging poses an even greater threat as it is widespread and unchecked, even inside protected areas (5). However, forest of the lowlands is most greatly threatened, and the gymnure may be afforded some protection from its montane habitat (6).Top
Mindanao gymnure conservation
Mount Apo, a dormant volcano on which the Mindanao gymnure has been collected, is also home to the imposing Philippine eagle (Pithecophaga jefferyi) and has been designated a Natural Park (7). However, as mentioned above, protected areas are not entirely immune to the widespread threat of deforestation. Further research into the status, ecology and threats of the Mindanao gymnure has been recommended by the IUCN (World Conservation Union) Eurasian Insectivores and Tree Shrews Action Plan (4).Top
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For further information on the Mindanao gymnure see:
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