Tragulus napu (F. Cuvier, 1822)

Vertebrate - Mammal

Mouse-deer ; Pilandok
Least concern (IUCN)
However, the Philippine Mouse Deer (Tragulus nigricans) is endangered

The mouse-deer stands less than a foot at the shoulder making it the smallest Asiatic hoofed animal. Although resembling a deer, it is more related to the pigs and camels. The character of the four well-developed toes relates it to the pigs, while the skull and teeth characteristics are reminiscent of the camels. Males grow long re-curved canines on upper jaw and no front teeth. It has no horns.

A single species of the unusual Family Tragulidae occurs in Southern Indochina to Java and Borneo. In the Philippines, it occurs only in Balabac and adjacent small islands particularly on Ramos, Bangkalan and Bugsuk.

A nocturnal animal, it hides in thick, tangled undergrowth in the daytime although it occasionally goes out during daylight hours. It roams along footpaths, roadsides, and around clearings, even along the shore. It feeds on some fruits, grass, and other vegetative matter. The female mouse deer gives birth to 1 or 2 young at a time.

The Philippine species is locally common but is rapidly declining due to heavy hunting pressure. Because of this, the species is considered vulnerable and is likely to be endangered in the near future if the pressure continues. The species is included in the Philippine Red Data List by the Wildlife Conservation Society of the Philippines.

This page was last modified Tuesday, June 21, 2011
National Museum of the Philippines
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