Predicted distribution of the flat-headed cat Prionailurus planiceps (Mammalia: Carnivora: Felidae) on Borneo
Wilting A., Cheyne SM., Mohamed A., Hearn AJ., Ross J., Samejima H., Boonratana R., Marshall AJ., Brodie JF., Giordiano A., Eaton JA., Hall J., Pilgrim JD., Heydon M., Semiadi G., Meijaard E., Macdonald DW., Breitenmoser-Würsten C., Kramer-Schadt S.
© 2016 National University of Singapore. The flat-headed cat Prionailurus planiceps is classified as one of the most threatened cat species in the world. Its range is restricted to southern Thailand, peninsular Malaysia and the two largest Sunda Islands, Borneo and Sumatra. Its association with wetlands and lowland areas puts great pressure on this species, because these habitats are most threatened by degradation and agricultural conversions. Borneo has been identified as the stronghold for flat-headed cat. Of 140 flat-headed cat occurrence records for Borneo, 50 (Balanced Model) or 76 (Spatial Filtering Model) were used to estimate potential habitat suitability. Although we predicted suitable habitat for the flat-headed cat scattered across the lowlands of Borneo, some large lowland areas are predicted to be unsuitable, a likely consequence of forest conversion to oil palm plantations. Of particular predicted importance are forests in Brunei Darussalam, the Sabangau National Park and surrounding forest complex in Central Kalimantan and forests in North Kalimantan, as well as the central forest block in Sabah. The main threat to the flat-headed cat is on-going transformation of forested areas to monoculture plantations, as the species appears unable to use these human-dominated habitats. Of particular importance for long-term survival of flat-headed cat is conservation of land near rivers and peat swamp forests.