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Text and photos by Nick Baker, unless credited to others.
Copyright ゥ Ecology Asia 2024







Low's Squirrel

Fig 1

Fig 2

Fig 3

Fig 4



Family : Sciuridae
Species : Sundasciurus lowii

Head-Body Length : up to 15 cm
Tail Length : up to 10 cm

Low's Squirrel inhabits lowland and lower montane, primary, tall secondary and degraded forest. Its maximum elevation is documented as 1400 metres, in Sarawak on the island of Borneo. In lowland areas it occurs alongside the Slender Squirrel throughout much of its range.

Its niche is generally regarded as mainly being confined to the forest floor, low shrubs and branches, however at times it is also truly arboreal. The two possible specimens illustrated here, from Fraser's Hill, Peninsular Malaysia, were seen around 10 metres from the ground amongst a tangle of thin branches.

It feeds on a variety of vegetation including bark, fungi, fruits and some insects. Its nests are made in a variety of locations including tree cavities, low branches and in burrows.

Its identifying features include a short, thick tail, and very pale to white underparts. Seven subspecies are recognised, each with subtle external differences. 

This somewhat elusive species occurs in southern Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra and Borneo. It has not been confirmed in Singapore.

Figs 1 and 2 : Pair of Low's Squirrel from Gunung Pulai, Johor, Peninsular Malaysia.

Fig 3 : This squirrel, seen at around 1300 metres elevation at Fraser's Hill, Peninsular Malaysia is believed to be an example of Low's Squirrel, based on the pale fur on the belly.

Fig 4 : Another squirrel from around 1300 metres elevation at Fraser's Hill, Peninsular Malaysia. This is identified as Low's Squirrel on the basis of the short, thick tail.

References : M10