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Keywords:

  • morphometrics;
  • range;
  • social organization

Abstract

To compare the morphometrics and ranging behaviour of the Malay civet Viverra tangalunga on Sulawesi with published data on Malay civets on Borneo, a trapping and a radio-telemetry study was carried out in the Kakenauwe and Lambasango Forest Reserves on Buton Island, Sulawesi. From June to September in 2001, 2002 and 2003, we obtained morphometric measurements from 32 Malay civets captured in box traps. Ten civets were radio-collared and home-range size, minimum daily distance travelled and diel activity patterns were estimated. The mean overall capture rate was one capture per 32 trap-nights. Trap capture rate varied between study sites, but there was no difference in trappability between sexes. Adult male civets were heavier, had larger neck circumferences and longer hind feet than adult females. Both sexes on Buton Island were found to have significantly smaller body sizes than their counterparts on Borneo. The mean home-range size for adult civets was 70 ha, with a mean overlap of 4.0% between ranges. The home ranges of female civets on Buton were smaller than those in logged forests on Borneo. Malay civets were most active at night from 18:00 to 07:00 h, during which the mean activity was 94%. There was no difference in the minimum distance travelled by both sexes during a 24 h period. All rest sites were situated at ground level and were associated with dense cover.