MAMMALS OF THAILAND
This is a list of the mammal species recorded in Thailand. There are 264 mammal species in Thailand, of which 3 are critically endangered, 11 are endangered, 24 are vulnerable, and 2 are near-threatened. 1 of the species listed for Thailand is considered to be extinct.
The elephants comprise three living species and are the largest living land animals.
Sirenia is an order of fully aquatic, herbivorous mammals that inhabit rivers, estuaries, coastal marine waters, swamps, and marine wetlands. All four species are endangered.
The tree shrews are small mammals native to the tropical forests of Southeast Asia. Although called tree shrews, they are not true shrews and are not all arboreal.
The two species of colugos make up the order Dermoptera. They are arboreal gliding mammals found in Southeast Asia.
The order Primates contains all the species commonly related to the lemurs, monkeys, and apes, with the latter category including humans. It is divided informally into three main groupings: prosimians, monkeys of the New World, and monkeys and apes of the Old World.
Rodents make up the largest order of mammals, with over 40 percent of all mammalian species. They have two incisors in the upper and lower jaw which grow continually and must be keep short by gnawing. Most rodents are small though the capybara can weigh up to 45 kg (100 lb).
The lagomorphs comprise two families, Leporidae (hares and rabbits), and Ochotonidae (pikas). Though they can resemble rodents, and were classified as a superfamily in that order until the early 20th century, they have since been considered a separate order. They differ from rodents in a number of physical characteristics, such as having four incisors in the upper jaw rather than two.
The order Erinaceomorpha contains a single family, Erinaceidae, which comprise the hedgehogs and gymnures. The hedgehogs are easily recognised by their spines while gymnures look more like large rats.
The "shrew-forms" are insectivorous mammals. The shrews and soledons closely resemble mice while the moles are stout bodied burrowers.
Bats are mammals of the order Chiroptera karptərə; from the Greek χείρ - cheir, "hand" and πτερόν - pteron, "wing") whose forelimbs form webbed wings, making them the only mammals naturally capable of true and sustained flight. By contrast, other mammals said to fly, such as flying squirrels, gliding possums, and colugos, glide rather than fly, and can only glide for short distances. Bats do not flap their entire forelimbs, as birds do, but instead flap their spread-out digits, which are very long and covered with a thin membrane or patagium. Bats represent about 20% of all classified mammal species worldwide, with about 1,240 bat species divided into two suborders: the less specialized and largely fruit-eating 'megachiroptera', or flying foxes, and the more highly specialized and echolocating 'microchiroptera'. About 70% of bats are insectivores. Most of the rest are frugivores, or fruit eaters. A few species, such as the fish-eating bat, feed from animals other than insects, with the vampire bats being the only parasitic mammalian species. Bats are present throughout most of the world, performing vital ecological roles of pollinating flowers and dispersing fruit seeds. Many tropical plant species depend entirely on bats for the distribution of their seeds. Bats are important in eating insect pests, reducing the need for pesticides. The smallest bat is the Kitti's hog-nosed bat, measuring 29–34 mm (1.14–1.34 in) in length, 15 cm (5.91 in) across the wings and 2–2.6 g (0.07–0.09 oz) in mass. Found only in Thailand, it is also arguably the smallest extant species of mammal, with the Etruscan shrew being the other contender. The largest species of bat is the giant golden-crowned flying fox, which is 336–343 mm (13.23–13.50 in) long, has a wingspan of 1.6 m (5 ft 3 in) and weighs approximately 1.1–1.2 kg). There are few fossilized remains of bats, as they are terrestrial and light-boned. An estimated only 12% of the bat fossil record is complete at the genus level. An Eocene bat, Onychonycteris finneyi, was found in the 52-million-year-old Green River Formation in Wyoming, United States, in 2003. It had characteristics indicating it could fly, yet the well-preserved skeleton showed the cochlea of the inner ear lacked development needed to support the greater hearing abilities of modern bats. This provided evidence flight in bats developed well before echolocation. The team that found the remains of this species, named Onychonycteris finneyi, recognized it lacked ear and throat features present not only in echolocating bats today, but also in other known prehistoric species. Fossil remains of another Eocene bat, Icaronycteris, were found in 1960. The appearance and flight movement of bats 52.5 million years ago were different from those of bats today. Onychonycteris had claws on all five of its fingers, whereas modern bats have at most two claws appearing on two digits of each hand. It also had longer hind legs and shorter forearms, similar to climbing mammals that hang under branches such as sloth's and gibbons. This palm-sized bat had broad, short wings, suggesting it could not fly as fast or as far as later bat species. Instead of flapping its wings continuously while flying, Onychonycteris likely alternated between flaps and glides while in the air. Such physical characteristics suggest this bat did not fly as much as modern bats do, rather flying from tree to tree and spending most of its waking day climbing or hanging on the branches of trees.
The order Philodota comprises the eight species of pangolin. Pangolins are anteaters and have the powerful claws, elongated snout and long tongue seen in the other unrelated anteater species.
The order Cetacea includes whales, dolphins and porpoises. They are the mammals most fully adapted to aquatic life with a spindle-shaped nearly hairless body, protected by a thick layer of blubber, and forelimbs and tail modified to provide propulsion underwater.
The carnivores include over 260 species, the majority of which eat meat as their primary dietary item. Carnivores have a characteristic skull shape and dentition.
The odd-toed ungulates are browsing and grazing mammals. They are usually large to very large, and have relatively simple stomachs and a large middle toe.
The even-toed ungulates are ungulates whose weight is borne about equally by the third and fourth toes, rather than mostly or entirely by the third as in perissodactyls. There are about 220 artiodactyl species, including many that are of great economic importance to humans.