Thursday, May 31, 2012

[Mammalogy • 2011] Melogale cucphuongensis | Vietnam Ferret-badger • A new species of ferret-badger, Genus Melogale, from Vietnam

Melogale cucphuongensis

Ferret-badgers, genus Melogale, are distributed in the Indochinese region, Java, Bali and NE-Borneo. There are currently four species described each having very similar phenotypes. In March 2005, a living ferret-badger of a different phenotype was confiscated by rangers from Cuc Phuong National Park, Vietnam. This individual died and the carcass was not preserved. In January 2006, a newly deceased individual of the same phenotype was found at the Endangered Primate Rescue Center, Cuc Phuong National Park. Due to several different characteristics these individuals vary greatly from the current species. Thus, we describe an additional species, M. cucphuongensis sp. nov. from northern Vietnam, which occurs sympatrically with M. moschata and M. personata, but differs from both species clearly in skull morphology and other features.

Based on a 423 bp-long fragment of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene, M. cucphuongensis sp. nov. is a member of the genus Melogale and represents a sister lineage to a clade consisting of M. personata and M. moschata.

Keywords: Mustelidae; Helictidinae; Melogale; new species; Vietnam

Cuc Phuong National Park

Nadler, Streicher, Stefen, Schwierz, Roos. 2011. A new species of ferret-badger, Genus Melogale, from Vietnam. Zool. Garten N.F. 80(5): 271–286.