An adult Asian palm civet (musang) was retrieved by a personnel of the Palawan Adventist School on Monday after the animal fell from a tree into the school property.
The civet, according to the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development Staff (PCSD) which received the animal from the school’s caretaker, was hungry and in a dehydrated condition.
The PCSD placed the animal under the care of the Palawan Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation Center (PWRCC) for its recovery and observation.
PCSDS spokesperson Jovic Fabello said the animal may have fallen from the roof due to hunger.
“Wala namang injuries kaming nakita. Siguro ay nagutom siya at naghahanap ng pagkain sa area, at nanghina siya sa gutom at nahulog,” Fabello said.
He said it was unusual for the animal to venture near the school compound, as they primarily live and stay in treetops, only coming down to eat when there is food on the ground.
Fabello said there is also a chance the animal may have escaped from captivity, as it is also a target of the illegal wildlife trade.
“Ang mga musang ay primarily arboreal, o nananatili lang sa mga puno. Bababa lang sila para kumain ng mga coffee beans, o kahit ano ang mga hilig nilang kainin. Pero sa area kung saan siya nahanap, medyo malapit ‘yon sa palengke. Unusual iyon. Baka nga ay may wildlife trade na nagaganap sa mga malalapit na area,” Fabello said.
Known locally as “musang” or “alamid,” the Asian palm civet (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus), is found in the forests of South and Southeast Asia. Though labeled as under “Least Concern” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), palm civet populations are declining due to illegal wildlife trade. They are illegally poached and held in captivity to eat coffee beans, while their stool is collected to create the famous “coffee alamid,” or in Malaysia, “kopi luwak.”