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Meerkats

Order:

Carnivora

Family:

Herpestidae

Group:

Suricata

Lifespan:

12 to 14 years

Gestation:

11 weeks

Distribution:

Kalahari Desert, Botswana and South Africa

Habitat:

Grassland

Diet:

Carnivore - Insects, lizards, birds, rats ,mice, eggs, scorpions and snakes

Conservation Status:

Least Concern
Facts

Meerkats Suricata Suricata are diurnal animals (Which means that we are active during the day.) They are on the go all day long, using their long claws to help forage for food or to play. Meerkats are small mammals only reaching heights of up to 60 cms from head to tail They are part of the mongoose family, varying slightly in colour typically brown and stripy with slender tails, using their tails to help balance when we on the lookout for predators. The eyes have black rings round this helps deflect sunlight. The ears are small half moon shaped which can close when digging. 

Living in a mob of up to 30 but within the group their will only be one breeding pair these are known as the alpha pair, whereby they can have up to 4 litters a year having 1 to 5 young and all the others play the part of babysitter helping to look after the babies. All of the other females in the group have the ability to produce milk to help feed the babies and to help teach the young how to forage for food, and even how to eat a venomous scorpion. 

Meerkats make lots of barking like noises to signal danger or simply to communicate amongst themselves.

 

 

Did you know?They are immune to certain types of venom.