This friendly animal, meerkat is often seen in groups. Along with that, these cute mammals can be seen even in several families which live together in large community. Meerkats are famous for their upright posture. They often stand on their rear legs and gaze alertly over the southern African plains where they live. Mothers can even nurse their young while standing.

meerkat

How does meerkat look?

This mammal is characterized by a broad head, large eyes, long legs, a thin tail and a brindled coat pattern. The head-and-body length is around 24 to 35 cm, and the weight is typically between 1,4 and 2,1 pounds. The coat is light grey to yellowish brown with alternate, poorly defined light and dark bands on the back.

meerkat

The meerkat family.

These animals are very social, therefore they live together in large groups. Although these mammals are cute, don’t let it fool you! Like in wolf packs, there is a hierarchy-generally dominant individuals in a pack breed and produce offspring, and other members provide care to the pups. Or, bringing food! Meerkats will eat insects, lizards, birds, and fruit. They communicate by purring.

one day my son

Burrow life.

Meerkat groups use several different burrows and move from one to another. Each burrow is an extensive tunnel-and-room system that remains cool even under the broiling African sun. Females give birth to two to four young each year in one of the group’s burrows. Fathers and siblings help to raise young, teaching them to play and alerting them to the possible danger from above. Young meerkats are so fearful of predatory birds that even airplanes will send them diving for cover.

la familia

Social behavior.

Meerkats are highly vigilant, and frequently observe their territory by turning their heads side to side. Moreover, some individuals always stand sentry and look out for danger. Vocal communication is often used in different contexts; for instance repetitive, high-pitched barks are used to warn others of predators nearby. They will generally stay in their burrows for safety, where they will remain until the danger is gone.

meerkat

Did you know meerkat’s top speed can reach 20 miles per hour?

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