​Size

Length: 25-35cm, Tail: 17-25cm

Weight

600-975g

Habitat

Savannah. Distribution: Southern Africa (Angola, Namibia, South Africa and Botswana).

Diet - Omnivore

Insects, spiders and other small animals, roots and bulbs.

Socialization

Suricate (Meerkats) are diurnal. They live in colonies of up to 30. The groups consist of 2-3 family units comprising a male, a female and their 2-5 young. They usually inhabit the burrows of ground squirrels, which they enlarge by digging with their sharp claws. When emerging from their burrows in the early morning, they tend to sunbathe before spending the day foraging for small prey.

Adults take it in turns to stand on sentry, finding a convenient vantage point where they can watch for predators, such as eagles. If danger is sighted, the sentry gives a warning bark, and the meerkats flee to the safety of their burrows. If the threat is a snake, the adults will huddle together and drive the predator away. While sentries keep watch, other meerkats take care of the young.

Reproduction

The females give birth to 2-5 young in a nursery chamber of the burrow.

Gestation

Gestation is 11 weeks.

Life Expectancy

12 to 14 years in captivity.

Predators

Jackals
Eagles
Badgers
Wild cats
Many others