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Milne-Edwards (1). An examination of the list of the mammals obtained by him in this district shows that the fauna has a character intermediate between those of the Oriental and Palæarctic Regions, besides containing a considerable proportion of peculiar forms. As, however, most of the Oriental genera extend even further north into the Chinese province of Kansu, and some even cross into Japan, countries which are otherwise well within the Palæarctic Region, it will be most convenient to draw the boundary of the Oriental Region to the south of Moupin. Beyond this point again our knowledge of the distribution of the mammals is very scanty, and though the northern part of China appears to be distinctly Palæarctic, and the southern Oriental in its affinity, there is, so far as we know, a considerable admixture of forms all over this part of Asia. Probably the most convenient boundary will be found to be that adopted by Wallace—the northern edge of the basin of the Yang-tze-Kiang. This is, no doubt, to a great extent an artificial boundary, but such a fault is unavoidable in the present instance, as there is here no natural frontier to separate the two regions. In addition to the south-eastern part of Asia, the Oriental Region includes within its boundaries all the large and important islands lying between that continent and the Australian Region. The principal of these are the Chinese islands of Formosa and Hainan, the large group of the Philippines, together with Sumatra, Java, Borneo, and the adjacent islands up to Wallace’s Line. With the exception of Celebes, all these islands are truly continental in character—that is to say, are separated from the mainland by seas of less than 100 fathoms of depth. But Celebes is in some respects anomalous, and will be considered in greater detail below.
The boundary between the Australian and the Oriental Regions called Wallace's Line, as having been first pointed out by that distinguished naturalist, runs between the two small islands of Bali and Lombok. Bali is connected by shallow water, and also by its zoological relationships, with Java; while Lombok agrees in character with Timor and the other Australian islands further east. From Bali the boundary of the Oriental Region runs in a north-eastward direction, between Celebes on the one side and the Sula islands and Gilolo on the other.
SECTION II.-GENERAL VIEW OF THE MAMMAL-FAUNA
OF THE ORIENTAL REGION
The Oriental Region lies almost wholly within the tropics. The greater part of the country within its borders enjoys a bountiful rainfall, and is covered with luxuriant forests; the only portion which is less favoured being the north-western part of India and the strip of country along the northern shores of the Persian Gulf. In these districts there is very little rain, and desert conditions and a desert Fauna, somewhat resembling those of the African Sahara, prevail.
The Fauna of the Oriental Region presents, on the whole, a striking contrast to that of the Australian Region. The characteristic features of the latter are doubtless due to the long isolation to which it has obviously been subjected, whereas the Oriental Region as regards its characteristic forms is more nearly allied to the neighbouring Palæarctic Region, from which probably most of its inhabitants have been derived.
The Oriental Region contains representatives of eight out of the nine Orders of terrestrial mammals, the Monotremes alone being wholly absent, while the Mar
supials are barely represented by two species of Cuscus (Phalanger) found only in the island of Celebes, which have been obviously derived from the neighbouring Australian Region.
The Edentates, like the marsupials, are also represented by one genus only, Manis (the Pangolin), which the Oriental shares with the Ethiopian Region.
The Oriental further resembles the Ethiopian Region in the variety of its forms of Ungulates, although they are not
nearly so abundant. Three genera of Antelopes, the Fourhorned Antelope (Tetraceros), the Black-buck (Antilope), the Nylghaie (Boselaphus), (see Fig. 24, p. 126), are peculiar to it, as is also a group of wild Oxen (Bibos), with three species—the Gayal (Fig. 25), the Gaur, and the Banting. But while the Rhinoceroses, the Wild Asses, the Elephants, and the Antelopes are common to both the Oriental and Ethiopian Region, the Oriental possesses in addition Deer,