Order : RODENTIA
Family : Sciuridae
Species : Callosciurus notatus
Head-Body Length : 17-22 cm
Tail Length : 16-21 cm
Weight : 150-280 grams
The Plantain Squirrel is
extremely adaptable, occurring in a wide range of habitats including
secondary and coastal forest, mangrove, plantations, parklands and
semi-urban areas. Diurnal in habits it feeds mainly on fruits, especially
those planted by man such as rambutan and jackfruit, however it will also
eat insects such as ants.
It is easily identified by the
two cream and black stripes on the sides, the orange belly, and the lack of
a pale spot behind the ear. The upper side is brown. As with most other
Callosciurus species, the nest consists of a spherical arrangement of
twigs and leaves, lined with fur and with a round entrance hole. This can be
located from around 5 metres above the ground to much greater heights where
the canopy allows.
The species ranges from
Southern Thailand and Peninsular Malaysia to Sumatra, Java, Bali, Lombok and Borneo. In Singapore
it is abundant and has adapted well to urbanization. Six subspecies are
Fig 1 : Feeding on
fruits of Macaranga sp. at Upper Peirce, Singapore.
Fig 2 : Adult of the typical form found in the Malay Peninsula and Singapore
(subspecies : C. n. miniatus), with orange venter, edged with a black
and a cream stripe.
Fig 3 : A juvenile sticks out its tongue as it stretches after a midday nap.
Photographed at Bali, Indonesia.
Fig 4 : Typical specimen from Bali, Indonesia (subspecies : C. n. notatus).
The colours of the venter and flank stripes are quite muted compared with
specimens from the Malay Peninsula (and Singapore).
References : M2