Predicted distribution of short-tailed mongoose Herpestes brachyurus (Mammalia: Carnivora: Herpestidae) on Borneo
Duckworth JW., Hearn AJ., Ross J., Samejima H., Mohamed A., Cheyne SM., Alfred R., Augeri DM., Mathai J., Heydon M., Boonratana R., Rustam None., Semiadi G., van Berkel T., Brodie JF., Giordano A., Eaton J., Fredriksson G., Hall J., Hon JJ., Nakashima Y., Macdonald DW., Belant JL., Kramer-Schadt S., Wilting A.
© 2016 National University of Singapore. Short-tailed mongoose Herpestes brachyurus is known to inhabit Borneo, Sumatra and peninsular Malaysia. Locality records show that it is widespread and probably common in at least the northern half of Borneo. Records are much sparser south of 2°N. It occurs in forest and, to a poorly clarified extent, non-forest habitats. Eighty-six spatially precise records were used to model its Bornean distribution. This modelling is complicated by several factors: difficulties of field separation from collared mongoose H. semitorquatus (reducing the number of available records); limited interest in, and thus familiarity with, the species (perhaps reducing the reliability of the respondents’ opinions on habitat use); and strong evidence that altitudinal range and perhaps other aspects of habitat use differ between major landmasses (also potentially confounding opinions on habitat use). Within Borneo it is important to (1) clarify the extent of the specie’s use of degraded and non-forest habitats, and (2) assess whether the paucity of records in Borneo from south of 2°N reflects a rarity of animals or simply low survey effort. Irrespective of short-tailed mongoose’s precise habitat-use patterns in Borneo, it seems unlikely to be under major threat there. Its extent of occurrence encompasses all, or nearly all, the island; it has a large potential range outside the lowlands where large-scale forest clearance has been concentrated; there is no evidence of any association with any particularly threatened microhabitat; and it is highly unlikely to be subject to targeted or intensive hunting except locally as a livestock predator.