Binturong (Arctictis binturong)
Get ready for the second-ever Daily Mammal 24-Hour Mammal Marathon!
Ivan T. Sanderson calls this guy “one of the most astonishing and paradoxical animals known” in Living Mammals. I had never heard of them until Claire e-mailed me to request one, and I’m so glad she did. They’re related to sloths and to civets, and like sloths, they seem to grow algae on their fur that can give them a greenish hue. They’re nocturnal, eat bamboo, other shoots, fruit, tree frogs, and insects, and they live in Asia. Excitingly, Walker’s Mammals of the World says that binturongs make good pets—they’re very affectionate and follow their owners around like dogs! They are also known as bearcats and they have prehensile tails. Please, let’s get one! Or maybe not:
“Snarling porch sitter thought to be a binturong” from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette