Breaking News: Asian Palm Civet Is Three Species

Civets are intriguing animals. We’ve had fun with replicas of them here

civet-common

The common palm civet (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus).

And we’ve seen an interest during 2010 in one “mangy civet as an Oriental Yeti” news item, too.

This bizarre creature dubbed the oriental Yeti baffled scientists after emerging from ancient woodlands in remote central China. I declared it was a civet; mystery solved, said the Christian Science Monitor. Photo: CEN

Now comes the splitting of civet species.

The site named Treehugger is reporting that the well-known palm civet family is being pulled apart to create two new species. Those studying the genome of Paradoxurus hermaphroditus have discovered that, in fact, the Asian palm civet is actually three distinct species.

The civet, which is famous for its coffee processing abilities, is believed to have evolved differently in northeastern India, than in parts of Borneo and the Philippines, as opposed to the ones in Southeast Asia, including Indonesia. The three region’s civets are now considered to all be individual species, not subspecies.

The civet is an integral part of producing Kopi Luwak, the world’s most expensive coffee. Berries from coffee plants are fed to the civets, which digest the fruit and pass the hard beans adding enzymes that lead to a smooth cup of coffee in the process. A single cup of Kopi Luwak can cost $100 in some parts of the world.

About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013.

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  1. Whether they are one or three they still produce the most exclusive coffee beans in the world. I wonder if they appreciate this fact.