9 Malaysia’s Critically Endangered Mammals

9 Malaysia's Critically Endangered Mammals
9 Malaysia's Critically Endangered Mammals

Malaysia has more than 200 species of mammals, from the smallest shrews to the largest elephants. The country has several parks and reserves where this wildlife is protected, including those in Taman Negara, Sepilok Sanctuary and Sarawak. Malaysia has the second-highest number of endangered mammal species in Southeast Asia after Indonesia. Despite the government’s conservation efforts, Malaysians are not yet aware of the importance of conservation. Some of the highly endangered mammals in Malaysia according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) are considered below.

East Sumatran rhinoceros

The eastern Sumatra rhinoceros, scientifically named Dicerorhinus sumatrensis harrissoni, is an endangered representative of the Rhinocerotidae family and a still existing species of the Dicerorhinus genus. It is grouped among large mammals, although it is the smallest rhinoceros. Eastern Sumatra Rhinoceros measures 110 to 145 centimeters high on the shoulder and 2.3 to 3.2 meters of body length. The weight ranges from 500 to 1,000 kilograms. It has two horns with the larger nasal horn, while the smaller one is a stud. His body is covered with reddish-brown hair. Eastern Sumatran rhino lives forests and swamps in the lowlands and highlands. They are loners and couples only during mating and rearing offspring. The females are ready for breeding between the ages of six and seven years, while a pregnancy lasts from 15 to 16. Eastern Sumatran rhinoceros usually feed in the morning with its food, which consists of branches, leaves, fruits, and shoots. Currently, only 100 Eastern Sumatran rhinos are expected to remain, making them critically endangered.

Black shrew

The Black Shrew, scientifically named Suncus ater, is found on the Kinabalu in Malaysia. It is highly endangered due to habitat loss. It is a creature similar to the mouse, with a black body and a brown head. The size is between 20 and 100 millimeters. They have a small pair of eyes with poor visibility, but an excellent sense of smell and hearing. Black Shrew is an earthy mammal that searches for grain, leafy vegetation, insects, worms and nuts. As with many other shrew species, the black-mouthed goat has a high metabolic rate and a greedy appetite. They can eat almost twice their body weight in food daily. They are lonely mammals and very aggressive towards each other.

Malay water dwarf

The Malaysian water gnome, scientifically called the Chimarrogale hantu, is a species of shrew found only in Selangor, Malaysia. The species was originally listed as endangered but is currently listed as near-threatened. This shrew has a black coat and a white underside on the top, the tail surface, and the sides. It has paws that mainly help with swimming. The tip of the tooth is reddish due to the iron pigment that hardens the tooth enamel. A full-grown Malaic water falcon can be up to 10 centimeters high and 20 centimeters long. She lives on freshwater bodies with vegetation cover and spends a lot of time underwater while feeding on fish, frogs and delicate plants.

Threats to Mammals in Malaysia

The above mammals and others, including the convex horseshoe nose, the Malaysian round-leaf bat, Sunda pangolin, Malaysian tiger, Javan rhinoceros, and Western Sumatran rhinoceros, are either critically endangered or close to several negative human activities. These devastating threats include poaching, the destruction of natural vegetation for settlement, agriculture, and logging. Climate change has also affected most of the habitat composition, resulting in inadequate food and unfavorable conditions affecting the population of these mammals.

Critically endangered Mammals In MalaysiaBinomial Scientific Name
East Sumatran rhinoDicerorhinus sumatrensis harrissoni
Black shrewSuncus ater
Malay water dwarfChimarrogale hantu
Convex horseshoe noseRhinolophus convexus
Malayan round-leaf batHipposideros nequam
Sunda PangolinManis Javanica
Malayan tigerPanthera tigris jacksoni
Javan rhinocerosRhinoceros sondaicus
Western Sumatran rhinocerosDicerorhinus sumatrensis sumatrensis