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Himalayan Striped Squirrel
   
   

Fig 1


Fig 2


Fig 3

 

Order : RODENTIA
Family : Sciuridae
Species : Tamiops macclellandi

Head-Body Length : 11 cm
Tail Length : 11 cm
Weight : unknown

The Himalayan Striped Squirrel, also known as the Western or Burmese Striped Squirrel, is mainly a species of montane, forested areas above 700 metres elevation, though in some parts of Burma and Thailand it is reported as being found at lower elevations. It is almost exclusively arboreal in habits, preferring tall forests, fruit trees and coconut palms.

The species is small in size, and quick in habits : it can easily be overlooked as it frantically moves from tree to tree searching for their food source - mainly insects. The striped pattern serves as an effective camouflage on fissured tree trunks.

The thickness and length of the alternating cream and dark brown dorsal stripes is the key identifying feature, and is diagnostic in distinguishing it from other, larger striped squirrels. In this species the stripes are thick and bold and run from near the eye to the base of the tail, which is narrow and short-haired.

The species ranges from the Himalayas through northern Burma and southern China to Thailand and Peninsular Malaysia. In the east of its range, in parts of eastern Thailand, the species coexists with the Cambodian Striped Squirrel.


Figs 1 to 3 : Three specimens from lower montane forest at Fraser's Hill, Peninsular Malaysia.


References : M3