23 June 2008

Asian Palm CivetKingdom : Animalia
Phylum : Chordata
Class : Mamalia
Order : Carnivora
Family : Viverridae
Genus : Paradoxurus
Species : P. hermaphroditus
Common Names : Musang, Toddy cat, Common Palm Civet, Luwak (Indonesia), Alamid (Philipines)

The common palm civet is found in temperate and tropical rain forest from the Himalayas and southern China, to the Philipines, The Malay peninsula, and the Indonesian Island (Sumatra, Jawa, Sulawesi). Its is high adaptive animal and can live in dense forests, agricultural areas, and even alongside humans.

Weighing from 4 to 11 pounds, the palm civet’s head and body length is 17 to 28 inches (43.2-71 cm), with tail length of 16 to 26 inches (40.6-66 cm). It ears are small and faintly pointed, as is its nose. Its has a long and slender body with short legs. They have a coarse, shaggy grayish to brown coat with black-tipped guard hairs over all. Three rows of black spot run along each side of its body. The hair around its eyes, cheeks and muzzle is black, with spot of white under each eye and on each side of its nose. The ears, feet and last end of its tail are also black. The markings on its face resemble a raccoon's. Its species name comes from the fact that both sexes have scent glands underneath their tail that resemble testicles. They can spray a noxious secretion from this gland.

Common Palm Civet are very fond of palm sap, therefore their common name. The sap is used by natives to make a sweet liquor called “toddy”, which gives the palm civet its other common name. In Indonesia called Luwak, while in Philipines called Alamid.

Palm civets forage exclusively at night. The likelihood of encountering predators during the day may have favored nocturnal foraging behavior. Palm civets become active only after dark and retreat to rest sites just before dawn.

When spending time in one area, civet will use the same tree to sleep in during the day. Palm civets choose the tallest and largest trees in the immediate area. They exhibits considerable overlap of ranges among conspecifics. Social organization and activity patterns of these civets are shaped by the distribution of food resources and the activities of larger mammalian predators. The palm civet is more arboreal than the large Indian civet. Non-overlapping territories often occur when food resources are evenly distributed, and defense is uneconomical when food resources are superabundant. When foraging in the same area, civets repeatedly used the same resting trees. Resting trees with vines and holes, preferred by the civets, were used for several consecutive days

Palm civets reproduce throughout the year although it has been recorded that kittens are most often seen from October to December. Kittens are born in a litter of 2 to 5 young. Palm civets become sexually mature at 11 to 12 months. In captivity the common palm civet can live up 22 years. Young are born in tree hollows or in boulder crevices. The Gestation period is about 60 days(2 months). The birth mass is about 88.65 g (average)

The common palm civet is primarily frugivorous (mangos, melons, and bananas) but is omnivorous. It feeds mostly on berries, fleshy fruits, and the fruit of Ficus trees. It is picky about the fruit that it eats, picking only ripe fruit. It will also eat birds, rodents and insects as well as fruit. Their favorite foods is the red, ripe coffee cherry.

They eat the cherries, bean and all. While the bean is in the little guy’s stomach, it undergoes chemical treatments and fermentation. The bean finishes its journey through the digestive system, and exist, The still-intact beans are collected from the forest floor, and are cleaned, than roasted and ground just like any other coffee. To obtain the beans, they must be collected almost immediately after they are deposited on the ground. Once they have been exposed to the elements for even a very short period, especially in the rainy season, they break down into individual beans and we can no longer be sure that they are genuine civet coffe (kopi luwak).
Other terms to describe it are earthy, mustly and exotic. The body is almost syrupy and it’s very smooth. The resulting coffee is said to be like no other. It has a rich, heavy flavour with hints of caramel or chocolate.


fei said...

fei was here

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