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Not like anything else, so difficult to classify.
Its latin name is Manis temmincki, and in Africa you have
3 more 'brothers', the Manis gigantea, Manis tricuspis and Manis tetradactyla
If that doesn't help, how about Kakakuona which is the name in Swahili?

© http://letopis.kulichki.net/2001/image2001/pangolin.jpg

Eight different pangolin species can be found across Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. Poaching for illegal wildlife trade
and habitat loss have made these incredible creatures one of the most endangered groups of mammals in the world.[1]

Pangolins, sometimes called scaly anteaters, are covered with protective horny, overlapping scales.
Pangolins have small heads and long, broad tails. They are toothless and have no external
ears, although their hearing is good. Their sense of scent is well-developed, but their sight is
poor. The weight of the scales and skin make up about 20 percent of the pangolin's weight.[5]

© Photo Des & Jen Bartlett, National Geographic, March 1983

Pangolins are nocturnal and remain in their burrows during the day. All pangolins are able to roll
themselves into a ball to defend themselves, and it takes considerable force to unroll them.
Leopards and other large animals such as hyenas occasionally prey on pangolins.

Although pangolins gather up surface ants and termites, termite nests provide larger and more
concentrated sources of food. Pangolins dig the insects from mounds with their claws and use
their extremely long tongues (up to 16 inches in larger pangolins) to eat them. [5]

All pangolins belong to the genus Manis in the family Manidae, which is the only family within the order Pholidota.
The Asian pangolins include:

Indian or thick-tailed pangolin, Manis crassicaudata

Conservation status Near Threatened
Manis crassicaudata is found in the plains and hills of India, Sri Lanka, Nepal and some parts of Pakistan.
Its colour of its scales varies and depends on the colour of the earth in its surroundings.
In Kerala, it is known as "Eenampechi". In Sinhala it is called ”Kaballewa” and in Tamil ”Azhungu” or "Alangu"
It is hunted for its meat, which is considered tasty, and for making medicinal oil.[2]

Chinese or Formosan pangolin, Manis pentadactyla – Endangered


This species occurs in the Himalayan foothills in eastern Nepal, Bhutan and northern India, northeastern Bangladesh, across Myanmar to northern Lao PDR and northern Viet Nam, northern and northeastern Thailand, and through southern China (south of the Chiangjiang) to Hainan and Taiwan.

The species is heavily hunted inside of China, and is heavily hunted for export to China in other range states,
primarily for medicinal purposes. The populations have been greatly reduced in the last 15 years
(generation length estimated at 5 years), and decline suspected to continue over the next 15 years,
at a rate of over 50%.

This species is found in a wide range of habitats, including primary and secondary tropical forests,
limestone forests, bamboo forests, grasslands and agricultural fields, and grasslands [3]

The Chinese Pangolin belongs to the burrowing family. It can dig up to 8 ft deep (2.5 meters) in the ground
with its strong and clawed forefeet. It just takes the pangolin four to five minutes to dig that deep.
Once it enters the burrow, it blocks the opening. [4]

•Malayan or Sunda pangolin, Manis javanica – Endangered

The Sunda Pangolin, Manis javanica, also known as the Malayan Pangolin or Javan Pangolin, is found in
South-East Asia, including Thailand, Indonesia (Java, Sumatra, Borneo and the Lesser Sunda Islands),
the Philippines, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, and Malaysia and Singapore. These pangolins are found in
Southeast Asia’s forested habitats (primarily, secondary, scrub forest) and plantations (rubber, palm oil).
Mostly, they spend time within tree resting or searching food.
The Sunda Pangolin's main predators are the tiger and the Clouded Leopard [8]

•Palawan or Philippine pangolin or Malintong, Manis culionensis – Near Threatened

Manis culionensis), is a pangolin species endemic to the Palawan province of the Philippines.
Its habitat includes primary and secondary forests as well as surrounding grasslands. This species is moderately common within its limited range but is at risk due to heavy hunting.

Five distinct morphological characteristics involving the skull and the scales have been identified
which separate it from the closely related Manis javanica.[9]

The African pangolins include:

•Cape or Temminck’s ground pangolin, Manis temminckii

(Manis temminckii), Madikwe Game Reserve, South Afrika [10]

The Ground Pangolin (Manis temminckii), also known as Temminck's Pangolin or the Cape Pangolin,
is one of four species of pangolin which can be found in Africa and the only one in southern and eastern Africa.
Although it is present over quite a large area, it is rare throughout it and notoriously difficult to spot.
Its scarcity is partly because it is hunted by humans for its scales, which are used in love charms, and partly
because it is often burnt in bush fires.

ARKive video - Ground pangolin - overview
Ground pangolin, Smutsia temminckii - overview
BBC Natural History Unit

The Ground Pangolin can grow to a length of about 1 metre, with the tail typically between 30 and 50 cm.
It has a disproportionately small head, powerful hindlegs, and small forelegs. Walking is done almost entirely
on the backlegs with the heavy dragging tail acting as a counterweight.

It is entirely terrestrial and usually found in savanna or open woodland, generally feeding on termites or ants.
It is well adapted to this, with a very long (up to 50 cm) sticky tongue which is stored inside a pocket in the
mouth until needed. Although it is capable of digging its own burrow, it prefers to occupy disused holes dug
by a Warthog or an Aardvark or to lie in dense vegetation, making it even more difficult to observe. [14]

•Tree or African white-bellied pangolin, Phataginus tricuspis – Near Threatened

ARKive video - Three-cusped pangolin - overview
Three-cusped pangolin, Overview

Also known as the Three-cusped Pangolin, it is the most common of the African forest pangolins.
The Tree Pangolin ranges from Guinea through Sierra Leone and much of West Africa to Central Africa as
far east as extreme southwestern Kenya and north-western Tanzania. To the south it extends to northern Angola
and north-western Zambia.

The Tree Pangolin can walk on all fours or on its hind legs using its prehensile tail for balance.
It can climb up trees in the absence of branches. It has a well-developed sense of smell, but, as a nocturnal
animal, it has poor eyesight. Instead of teeth it has a gizzard-like stomach full of stones and sand it ingests.
The Tree Pangolin in Africa fills its stomach with air before entering water to aid in buoyancy for
well-developed swimming.


The Tree Pangolin is subject to widespread and often intensive exploitation for bushmeat and traditional medicine,
and is by far the most common of the pangolins found in African bushmeat markets. Conservationist believe that
this species has undergone a decline of 20-25% over the past 15 years (three pangolin generations) due mainly
to the impact of the bushmeat hunting. [11]

•Giant ground pangolin, Smutsia gigantea – Near Threatened

Location captive at Johannesburg Zoo, South Africa
Source: flickr: Pangolin - Manis temminckii, http://www.flickr.com/photos/wildimages/197302432/

Also called The Giant Pangolin, Manis gigantea.
It inhabits a range stretching along the equator from west Africa to Uganda.
It is found mainly in the savanna, rainforest, and forest, inhabiting areas with large termite populations
and available water. The Giant Pangolin does not inhabit high-altitude areas.

The Giant Pangolin is the largest of all pangolin species. While its average mass has not been measured,
one Giant Pangolin was found to weigh 33 kg (72.6 lbs). Males are larger than females, with male body
length about 140 cm (4 feet, 7.1 inches) and female about 125 cm (4 feet, 1.2 inches).
Curiously, it also has eyelashes.

As in all pangolins, infants have soft scales that eventually harden and are born with open eyes.
They cannot walk on their legs, but can move on their stomach. [15]

•Long-tailed or black-bellied pangolin, Uromanis tetradactyla

The Long-tailed Pangolin, Manis tetradactyla, also called the Black-bellied Pangolin or ipi, is an arboreal pangolin native to the sub-Saharan forests of Africa. Its common name is derived from its especially long tail
(average 60 cm, or 24 inches). In spite of the long tail, this species is the smallest pangolin. [13]

This species occurs in the forested regions of West and Central Africa, from Sierra Leone eastwards through
south-eastern Guinea, Liberia, Côte d’Ivoire and south-west Ghana, there being an apparent gap in distribution
until west Nigeria. They then occur eastwards through southern Cameroon, and much of the Congo Basin forest
block to the Semliki valley (and thus, just possibly, into Uganda) (Kingdon and Hoffmann in press).
Their presence in Cabinda (Angola) is possible

There is no quantitative data available on densities or abundance. This is the least frequently recorded of all
African pangolins, though it may be less rare than available records suggest. The species is extremely shy,
almost strictly arboreal, and mainly restricted to little-known and little-penetrated habitats [12].

Photographer: Unknown.

 1. http://www.savepangolins.org/what-is-a-pangolin/
 2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_Pangolin
 3. Duckworth, J.W., Steinmitz, R., Pattanavibool, A., Than Zaw, Do Tuoc & Newton, P. 2008.
     Manis pentadactyla. In: IUCN 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
     Version 2011.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 21 January 2012.
 4. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_Pangolin
 6. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Chinese_Pangolin_area.png
 7. http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Datei:Pangolin_borneo.jpg
    This picture was taken in Similajau National Park, Sarawak, Malaysia
     It has been used by others to illustrate different species of Pangolin, others than javanica
 8. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunda_Pangolin
 9. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philippine_Pangolin
10. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Steppenschuppentier2.jpg
11. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tree_Pangolin
12. Hoffmann, M. 2008. Uromanis tetradactyla. In: IUCN 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened       Species. Version 2011.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 21 January 2012.
13. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long-tailed_Pangolin
14. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ground_Pangolin
15. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giant_Pangolin

We had to be careful selecting the pictures, to ensure that they really
pictured the right specimen. You are welcome to correct us if we are still mistaken.


over 250


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