Suricate / Meerkat

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Scientific Name: Suricata suricatta

Of the mongoose family and also known as the meerkat it is one of the most endearing animals of Africa. The suricate has a long tail that is held rigidly up when running.


The dry eastern parts of southern Africa from southern Angola to the Cape.

Social structure
Highly sociable creatures living in troops of up to 50. They are strictly diurnal and live in burrows they dig themselves.

Range differentiation
No noticeable differentiation except maybe in the food types.

Open semi arid to arid areas.

Carnivorous – they feed on insects and other invertebrates. They have a keen sense of smell and are able to locate buried prey.

An average of three young are born after a gestation period of two and a half months. The young are looked after by older siblings when the mother is out foraging.

Two Suricates bonding

Suricates have close-knit family structures where there is constant bonding.

Suricates looking out from their burrow

When sensing danger suricates will head to their burrows and only leave when the danger has passed.