Sunday, July 7, 2019

Sri Lankan Ruddy Mongoose

The ruddy mongoose is found in hill forests of peninsular India and Sri Lanka. It is closely related to the Indian gray mongoose, which I thought these were, until I found that the ruddy mongoose has a black-tipped tail that extends two or three inches at the end which fit these mongooses exactly (the Indian gray mongoose has a pale yellow or white tipped tail).
Ruddy mongoose in Yala NP.
There are two subspecies, one of which is endemic to Sri Lanka (Herpestes smithii zeylanicus). It has tawny gray or iron gray fur. It has a grizzled appearance because individual hairs are ringed by creamy-white and black. The legs are brown and darker than the body. The hair around the muzzle and eyes is also brown, but with a stronger red rusty coloring. 
In Yala NP.
In Udwawalawe NP.
In Yala NP.
We saw our first ruddy mongoose in Udawalawe National Park walking down a dirt road, in and out of vegetation. 

Our second was in Yala National Park while we were searching for two leopards we had seen on the other side of a rock hill. 
An hour or so later we saw two ruddy mongooses in Yala together off the side of a road about a mile or so away from the previous one. 

1 comment:

  1. It was really fun to get several really good views of mongooses (mongeese?). They feel very foreign to me, and they are not something I have often--if ever--seen in zoos.