Animals >>

Malayan Civet

Malayan Civet (Viverra Tangalunga)
[Jump to Article]

Malayan Civet Facts

Five groups that classify all living things
A group of animals within the animal kingdom
A group of animals within a pylum
A group of animals within a class
A group of animals within an order
A group of animals within a family
Scientific Name:
The name of the animal in science
Viverra Tangalunga
The animal group that the species belongs to
What kind of foods the animal eats
Size (H):
How long (L) or tall (H) the animal is
43cm - 71cm (17in - 28in)
The measurement of how heavy the animal is
1.4kg - 4.5kg (3lbs - 10lbs)
How long the animal lives for
15 - 20 years
Whether the animal is solitary or sociable
Conservation Status:
The likelihood of the animal becoming extinct
The colour of the animal's coat or markings
Black, White, Grey, Yellow, Brown, Tan
Skin Type:
The protective layer of the animal
Favourite Food:
The preferred food of this animal
The specific area where the animal lives
Tropical rainforest
Average Litter Size:
The average number of babies born at once
Main Prey:
The food that the animal gains energy from
Rodents, Snakes, Frogs
Other animals that hunt and eat the animal
Tiger, Snakes, Leopards
Distinctive Features:
Characteristics unique to this animal
Elongated body and snout with sharp, pointed teeth

Join AZ Animals FREE to get amazing animal facts, printable animal activities, and much more sent directly to you.

Malayan Civet Location

Map of Malayan Civet Locations
Map of Asia

Malayan Civet

The Malayan civet (also known as the Oriental civet) is a species of civet natively found across the Malaysian Peninsula and on a number of the islands that surround it. The Malayan civet is one of the most distinguishable species of civet due to its dark legs, and the spot-like markings that form stripes along its body.

The Malayan civet is found inhabiting the tropical jungles and rainforests throughout mainland Malaysia and is also found on a number of the large tropical islands close by including the Philippines, Borneo and Sumatra. Unfortunately, Malayan civets have been drastically affected by increasing deforestation (and therefore habitat loss) in their native regions.

The Malayan civet is widely spread and fairly commonly found throughout much of South-East Asia and despite their cat-like appearance and behaviours, civets are not felines at all but are in fact more closely related to other small carnivores including weasels and mongooses. One of the Malayan civets most distinctive features is its long tail which is marked by up to 15 black bands and is actually thought to provide the Malayan civet with more camouflage in the jungle.

The Malayan civet is a solitary animal that only comes out under the cover of night to hunt and catch food. These nocturnal animals are primarily ground-dwelling, foraging for rodents on the forest floor, although the Malayan civet is known to climb up into the trees either in search of food or to hide from approaching predators.

The Malayan civet is a carnivorous animal, and like other species of civet, it survives on a purely meat-based diet. Small animals such as rodents, lizards, snakes and frogs make up the majority of the Malayan civet's diet, along with insects and other small creatures scuttling through the undergrowth.

Despite being a secretive yet relatively ferocious carnivore, the Malayan civet is actually preyed upon by a number of predators within their natural environment. Large predatory cats are the most common predators of the Malayan civet including tigers and leopards along with reptiles such as large snakes and crocodiles.

The female Malayan civet usually gives birth to up to 4 young after a gestation period that lasts for a couple of months. The babies are weaned by their mother until they are strong enough to fend for themselves. Malayan civets can live for up to 20 years, although most rarely get to be this old.

Today, the Malayan civet is under threat from deforestation and therefore drastic loss of much of its natural habitat. The main reason for such extensive deforestation in the area is either for logging or to clear the land to make way for palm oil plantations.

View all 35 animals that start with M.

Article Tools

Print Article
View printer friendly version of Malayan Civet article.
Source/Reference Article
Learn how you can use or cite the Malayan Civet article in your website content, school work and other projects.

First Published: 10th August 2010, Last Updated: 8th November 2019

1. David Burnie, Dorling Kindersley (2008) Illustrated Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 10 Aug 2010]
2. David Burnie, Kingfisher (2011) The Kingfisher Animal Encyclopedia [Accessed at: 01 Jan 2011]
3. David W. Macdonald, Oxford University Press (2010) The Encyclopedia Of Mammals [Accessed at: 10 Aug 2010]
4. Dorling Kindersley (2006) Dorling Kindersley Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 10 Aug 2010]
5. Richard Mackay, University of California Press (2009) The Atlas Of Endangered Species [Accessed at: 10 Aug 2010]
6. Tom Jackson, Lorenz Books (2007) The World Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 10 Aug 2010]