The thick-tailed pangolin is one of the species that inhabit the Udawalawe National Park and other forests of Sri Lanka. Also referred to as the “Indian pangolin”, this particular species has quite unique characteristics.
The scales are the most obvious and significant physical attributes of the pangolin and in addition to this, the snout, which is similar to that of the anteater, is prominently featured. The colour of the body of the thick-tailed pangolin is dark brown and its outer body or its armour, according to the Arkive organisation, is one of the toughest among mammals. The colour of its body varies with the environment or geographic features in which it is found.
Habitat and Environment
Although tough to identify, the thick-tailed pangolin inhabits several forests and wildlife sanctuaries of Sri Lanka. The Udawalawe National Park is one of the areas where these creatures can be observed. In Sri Lanka, it has been identified throughout the lowlands and in the hill regions and its location coincides with the presence of termites (Phillips 1981). Apart from Sri Lanka, it is also found in India, Nepal, and Pakistan.
Lifespan and Reproduction
The pregnancy period for the thick-tailed pangolin is over two months and typically, a single offspring is produced. An interesting point to note here is that the female pangolin carries its offspring on its tail.
Behaviour and Feeding
The primary source of food for the pangolin are termites and therefore, as mentioned above, it is usually found in areas with a substantial concentration of termites. Pangolins are usually nocturnal and prefer a solitary form of existence.
Cultural and Conservation Status
Thick-tailed pangolins are also referred to as the scaly anteater due to its similarity to the common anteater and the scales, which is common to pangolins. The IUCN has listed this creature as near threatened as its rate of population is decline is not at a high level.
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