Behavioural Ecology Research Group

               Phylogenetic status, phylogeography and social organisation of 

the black mongoose (Galerella nigratain Namibia, Africa.

The black mongoose is a habitat specialist living in isolated granite inselbergs across north-western Namibia.  Despite its value to the country in terms of eco-tourism, it remains one of Namibia’s least known carnivores.  The conservation and management of both this species and its unique habitat is currently hampered by a severe lack of knowledge.

This research uses molecular techniques to confirm the phylogenetic position of the black mongoose and to examine the population structure and dispersal ecology of the black mongoose in Namibia.  Studying the phylogeography of the black mongoose will give us an opportunity to investigate the evolutionary processes involved in shaping patterns of biodiversity across this fragmented habitat, a habitat with an unusually high biodiversity and high levels of endemism across all taxa.

In addition, we will describe the social organization of the black mongoose.  Anecdotal evidence suggests that the black mongoose displays intermediate levels of sociality when conditions are favourable.  A closer look at the social system of this species may give valuable insight into steps towards the adoption of sociality in mongooses.

The knowledge gained in this study will ultimately be used to make appropriate management recommendations for the black mongoose and its unique habitat.

Project Coordinator: Sara A Tromp

School of Integrative Biology, University of Queensland

Supervisors: Anne W Goldizen and Jennifer Seddon

Field Address: c/o Etosha Ecological Institute, Okaukuejo, Etosha National Park, Namibia.


Sara A Tromp
Behavioural Ecology Research Group
School of Biological Sciences
The University of Queensland
Brisbane, Queensland 4072

Telephone: +61 7 3365 7591
Room: 317, Goddard Building

E-mail: s.tromp1@uq.edu.au

This project is supported financially by:

Winifred Violet Scott Foundation

Wilderness Wildlife Trust

Go Green

Namibia Nature Foundation

Namibian Environment and Wildlife Society




All information and photographs on this webpage are © Sara A Tromp

Last updated October 2009