Thai National Parks

Species of Thailand

Northern treeshrew

Tupaia belangeri

Johann Andreas Wagner, 1841

The northern treeshrew (Tupaia belangeri) is a treeshrew species native to Southeast Asia.

In 1841, the German zoologist Johann Andreas Wagner first used the specific name Cladobates belangeri for treeshrews that had been collected in Pegu during a French expedition to Southeast Asia. These specimens were described by Isidore Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire in 1834 in whose opinion they did not differ sufficiently from Tupaia tana to assign a specific rank.


Results of a telemetry study involving northern treeshrews showed that their body temperature varies from 35 C F during the night to 40 C F during the day. This difference is larger than in other endotherms, and indicates that the circadian rhythms of body temperature and locomotor activity are synchronized.

Complete mitochondrial genome data support the hypothesis of a closer phylogenetic relationship of Tupaia to rabbits than to primates.

The northern treeshrew was one of 16 mammals whose genomes were sequenced by staff of the Broad Institute, which released a low-coverage assembly of the genome in June 2006. The genome will be useful in comparisons with the other genomes to identify genes.

Adult weight: 0.2 kg (0.44 lbs)

Maximum longevity: 11 years

In medical research

Tupaia belangeri has attained growing interest for use as a medical model. In 2002, an article was published describing that the primary hepatocytes of T. belangeri could be used as a model for studying the Hepatitis C virus, which is a major cause of chronic hepatitis worldwide.

Other scientists used Tupaia belangeri to study the development of photo reception, investigation of retinal cones, and refractive state and ocular component dimensions of the eye. Many studies have been done regarding eye structure, development, and vision using the Tupaia belangeri model because of the similarity to human eye structure and sight that is uncharacteristic of conventional small lab animals, such as rodents.

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Scientific classification

Tupaia belangeri

Conservation status

Least Concern (IUCN3.1)

Least Concern (IUCN3.1)


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Tupaia belangeri - Kaeng Krachan National Park
Tupaia belangeri - Kaeng Krachan National Park
Tupaia belangeri - Bangkok
Tupaia belangeri - Bangkok

Range Map

Distribution map of Northern treeshrew, Tupaia belangeri in Thailand
  • Bangkok Province
  • Cha-Am District, Phetchaburi
  • Chiang Dao Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Doi Inthanon National Park
  • Doi Suthep - Pui National Park
  • Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Kaeng Khoi District, Saraburi
  • Kaeng Krachan National Park
  • Khao Yai National Park
  • Kui Buri National Park
  • Mae Wong National Park
  • Mueang Phetchaburi District, Phetchaburi
  • Mueang Prachuap Khiri Khan District, Prachuap Khiri Khan
  • Pang Sida National Park
  • Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya District, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya
  • Phu Khiao Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Phu Luang District, Loei
  • Phu Suan Sai National Park
  • San Kamphaeng District, Chiang Mai
  • Sawi District, Chumphon
  • Si Racha District, Chonburi
  • Tat Mok National Park
  • Tha Yang District, Phetchaburi
  • Thong Pha Phum District, Kanchanaburi
Range map of Tupaia belangeri in Thailand