Agasthya 5.3 Common palm civet and an uncommon sight
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Centre for Excellence in Conservation Science
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It was well past ten at night and I was riding the Yamaha with Allwin in pillion. We were carrying out the nocturnal animal survey from Papanasam check post to Mundanthurai to see the impact of the SMK festival on nocturnal animals.

Close to reaching the Lower camp dam, in the not-so-bright lights of the bike, we could faintly see a civet like animal. A closer, more intense look revealed it to be a common palm civet. To our surprise and excitement, there were three little ones trailing behind the adult. It did not take a rocket scientist to realize they were young pups. These tiny pups were probably blinded by the light and were the prettiest little pups we both had seen! We quietly observed without any movement and did not pull out the camera that was tucked because of light drizzle. In a few moments, the pups, uttering a faint growl started approaching the bike! I do not know if they were curious or that they were trying to intimidate us! Never had I seen such behavior from a civet which usually is quick in slipping away on seeing people. Now, the adult, as if to pull the pups back began growling. The growl grew harsher as it came to pull the pups one by one away. I could now pull out the camera but was only able to record the parting growls of the civets as they scrambled away into the dense thickets. I do not have a picture on my hard disc. I do have one in my mind and so has Allwin for sure. This encounter of the cute little pups trying to scare us away will not be erased for some considerable time.



Editorial Team
Editor: Allwin Jesudasan
Associate editor: Rajkamal Goswami
Editorial Review: R. Ganesan, M. Soubadra Devy, T. Ganesh
Design and presentation: Kiran Salegame

Volume 5,  Issue 3
      November 2011

A S H O K A   T R U S T   F O R   R E S E A R C H   I N   E C O L O G Y   A N D   T H E   E N V I R O N M E N T

Common palm civet and an uncommon sight
- Seshadri K.S.
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