meerkat scientific name

In each pack is a dominant male that tries to prevent other males from mating. Conservation Status . IUCN status: Least concern. For that reason, the dominant female is extremely hostile to subordinates that try to breed, and she causes endocrine effects that prevent young females from ovulating. Suricata suritcatta. Despite its name, the meerkat is not closely related to any feline species, and is instead a member of the mongoose family. Common Names – … Although they are not threatened by Human activity as drastically as a number of Africa’s other unique species, Meerkats have been susceptible to contracting diseases from other animals which can have devastating implications on local populations. Average Weight – 730g (1.6lbs). Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. While researching endangered animals you stumbled upon the acronym IUCN and may have thought: What is the IUCN? There are three different sub-species of Meerkat that are found in varying geographic locations and although they are very similar in appearance, they differ slightly in their fur colouration and markings. Meerkats are highly sociable animals living in colonies of up to 30 individuals in open ground or scrubland. Meerkat, ( Suricata suricatta ), also spelled mierkat, also called suricate, burrowing member of the mongoose family (Herpestidae), found in southwestern Africa, that is unmistakably recognizable in its upright “sentinel” posture as it watches for predators. Colour varies from dark to grizzled light gray or tan, with broad dark bars across the back and a black-tipped tail. Unlike with the rearing of numerous other small mammal species, both females and males tend to their young with males and siblings known to help to teach the young Meerkats the skills of surviving in the surrounding desert. Weight: Less than one kilogram. Prey is located in crevices and under stones or logs primarily by smell and is rapidly dug up. Large prey is battered with the heavy claws on the forefeet before being torn to pieces. Scientific Name. In the meantime, they raise others’ pups in order to maintain larger pack size, as individuals in large packs live longer. Genus – Suricata. The fur of the Meerkat has actually adapted remarkably to the differing desert conditions, not only helping to keep the animal cool during the boiling hot days, but also acting as a layer of insulation to keep it warm during the freezing-cold winter nights. Captive 15 years . Slender-tailed Meerkat. Scientific Name and Common Name; Kingdom: Plantae – Plants Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants … What is a suricate, then? The Meerkat (also known as the Suricate) is a small species of foraging mammal that is found inhabiting the harsh conditions of the open and arid, semi-desert plains in southern Africa. Etymology The Meerkat or suricate (Suricata suricatta) is a small carnivoran belonging to the mongoose family (Herpestidae). Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree.... Meerkats evading a mother jackal that is searching for food for her cubs. The scientific name for Meerkat is suricata suricatta. Scientific Classification. They even crouch over the pups, shielding them from attack by raptors. The meerkat is actually a mongoose in the family Herpestidae. Like other Mongoose species, Meerkats have an excellent sense of smell which is used to sniff out potential prey that is lurking just under the surface of the sand. They comprise over 30 species, and 11 in Africa alone. The meerkat is classified as a carnivore, but primarily eats insects. A member of the Mongoose family, Meerkats differ from the other 35 Mongoose species in a number of ways with the biggest difference being that Meerkats are incredibly sociable animals, where most Mongooses are not (only 3 other species are known to liv… Able to run as quickly backwards as forwards! Pups are also killed by subordinates, a fact apparently recognized by the dominant female. It’s light, with slender, muscular limbs, a long tail and quite different from the rest of its family. Scientific Name: Suricata suricatta. Description. In places that are closer to growing Human settlements and near to areas where domestic animals are grazed, Meerkats have been known to contract both bovine diseases and rabies that can affect whole populations of these adaptable and otherwise resilient animals. Meerkat - Name: Meerkat, Scientific Name: Suricata suricatta, Continent: Africa, Mass: 1.6 lbs, Height: 25 - 30 cm., Diet: Carnivore, Status: Least Concern, TV … Adults weigh less than 1 kilogram (2.2 pounds), with older dominant breeders heavier than subordinates. The Meerkat is a carnivorous animal which means that despite its small size, it only forages for and eats small animals in order to gain all of the nutrition (and most of the moisture) that is needs to survive. Helpers are thus valuable to the breeding female but less so if there are other litters to care for. The real delights into Meerkat life were displayed in the BBC series Meerkat Manor which involved the following and filming of one band of Meerkats in the Kalahari Desert. The meerkat’s scientific name is Suricata suricatta. Infraclass: Eutheria 11. The show, which aired on Animal Planet, … Subkingdom: Bilateria 3. Nicknames, cool fonts, symbols and tags for Meerkat – KitKat, milo, Buttercup, Biscuit, Millie, Hazel. The classification of the meerkat is based on morphological characteristics. Meerkats probably dig these warrens themselves, although they have been reported to move in with South African ground squirrels (Xerus inauris). Weight. Updates? Although there may be a number of breeding pairs in one band, Meerkat society is generally dominated by one male and female pair. Diet . Unlike all but three other Mongoose species, the Meerkat is a highly sociable animal that inhabits territories in the desert in groups that usually contain between 10 and 30 individuals (although much larger bands are not uncommon in areas where there is an ample supply of food), and consist of three or four family units of a male and female pair, with their young. Class - Mammalia. Meerkats live in all parts of the Kalahari Desert in Botswana, in much of the Namib Desert in Namibia and southwestern Angola, and in … Meerkats are sandy to light brown in colour with eight darker stripes on their back, markings on their sides (which are unique to the individual) and a lighter face and underside. It has four toes on the hind feet but five on the forefeet, larger ears, and a bushy coat and tail. They were formerly included within Viverridae, a very old carnivore family that includes civets and genets. They spend time grooming each other, playing, wrestling, and even racing. If this fails, the dominant female may attack subordinates during estrus and pregnancy or kill their pups. The biggest threat to Meerkats are Birds of Prey such as Hawks and Eagles that can spot these animals from high above their heads, along with ground-dwelling predators such as Snakes that hunt them on the ground. Phylum: Chordata 5. In order to try and protect themselves from being so vulnerable in their open and arid surroundings, Meerkats adopt the safety in numbers tactic and ensure that there is always an individual on guard to warn the rest of the group of any approaching danger. Digging in the softer sand requires less effort and therefore means that they can conserve more energy for other activities. So let’s answer your questions. As a tunneler, the meerkat is possibly the most specialized mongoose. Though we edit our accounts for accuracy, we cannot guarantee all information in those accounts. Small packs do not survive drought years, possibly because they are expelled from their home ranges by larger neighbouring packs. Young Meerkats are usually born in November after a gestation period that lasts for around 11 weeks. IUCN: The Basics The IUCN — which stands for International Union for Conservation of Nature — is the world’s largest global environmental network. In the dry season meerkats obtain water by digging up succulent tubers. Top Speed – 32 km/h (20mph). 720-730g (25.4-25.8oz) Length. Although they are widespread and common throughout much of their natural range, populations in certain areas can be affected by the lack of rainfall or increasing numbers of their natural predators. In Dutch, meerkat means the guenon, a monkey of the genus Cercopithecus. The animal also has smaller ears and thinner hair. The English translation is marsh cat, although Meerkats don't live near marshes and they are not cats. One of a series of different alarm calls will then be sounded to alert the rest of the group what the danger is, often causing the whole band to dive into their underground burrow to hide. Apparently, it is so hazardous for meerkats to leave the larger pack, and so unlikely that they could rear offspring without helpers anyway, that many young animals simply postpone reproduction. Lifespan (in wild): 12-14 years. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). Phylum - Chordata. As they forage in broad daylight in the open and away from the den, meerkats are susceptible to attack, especially by jackals and raptors. Kingdom - Animalia. Classification – Small mammal. The name has a Dutch origin, but by misidentification. Class: Mammalia 9. The present scientific name Suricata suricatta was first used by Oldfield Thomas and Harold Schwann in 1905 when they described a specimen collected at Wakkerstroom. Pack members take turns doing this in no particular order; they do not, however, act as sentinels before they have eaten their fill, benefitting first from the early warning. Most closely related to horses and rhinos! Omnivorous Natural Habitat. The others are aware the sentinel is on duty and can thus spend more time digging. A member of the Mongoose family, Meerkats differ from the other 35 Mongoose species in a number of ways with the biggest difference being that Meerkats are incredibly sociable animals, where most Mongooses are not (only 3 other species are known to live in groups larger than pairs). Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. In Dutch, meerkat means the guenon, a monkey of the Cercopithecus genus.… What is a suricate? Meerkat - Name: Meerkat, Scientific Name: Suricata suricatta, Continent: Africa, Mass: 1.6 lbs, Height: 25 - 30 cm., Diet: Carnivore, Status: Least Concern, TV Shows: The Powerpuff Girls (2016) Clarence Teen Titans Go! About half of those expelled return a few weeks later, when her hostility has subsided. It is the only member of the genus Suricata. The Meerkat is a small sized mammal that has a long and slender body with a long and light but black-tipped tail that can almost double the animal’s total length. Populations across southern Africa however, appear to be generally stable with large numbers of Meerkats also found in a few of the big national parks. The meerkat or suricate is a small carnivoran belonging to the mongoose family. Sentinels, therefore, are not really the altruists they were once thought to be. Most mongooses differ from viverrids by being terrestrial, insectivorous, diurnal, and gregarious. Length: 10 to 14 inches, tail length is 7 to 10 inches Average Adult Weight: 1 1/2 pounds Life Span: 12 to 14 years Description: Meerkats have long slender bodes and short limbs. Save 30% off a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive content. Suricate is Swahili for “Rock Cat”. Today, the Meerkat is an animal that listed by the IUCN as being of Least Concern from being extinct in its natural environment in the near future. Life Expectancy – 12 – 14 years. If the sentinel sees a predator approaching, it alerts the others with a high-pitched call, and the pack scatters for cover. During this period, at least one helper each day fasts while it keeps the pups inside the den and defends against neighbouring meerkats, which would kill them. Family - Herpestidae. Meerkats are unusual among carnivores in that the pups are raised with the assistance of adults other than the parents. It’s simply another name for the same animal. Scientific Name: Cynictis penicillata. The individual territory of a Meerkat group covers a large enough area to ensure that the band has everything they need to most successfully survive. While digging, they glance around frequently for these predators. Wild 7 years. Sure, last weekend, you enjoyed a 32-hour stream-a-thon and are now social media friends with the delivery driver. Meerkats have long, sharp claws on their front paws that are curved and can grow up to 2cm long and help them to both dig their burrows and to find small animals that are buried beneath the soft sand. Order - Carnivora. It is the only member of the genus Suricata. In 1776, Johann Christian Daniel von Schreber described a meerkat from the Cape of Good Hope, giving it the scientific name Viverra suricatta. Scientific Name Slender-Tailed Meerkat: Suricata Suricatta Distribution and Habitat Geographic Range. Births among other mothers become more common, and the pack consists of several family groups living cooperatively, though the dominant female still produces more pups than all her subordinates combined. This includes areas of both hard and soft sand as although the hard sand provides the perfect ground for building their tunnels in, it requires more energy for Meerkats to forage for food in it too. Order: Carnivora 12. Whilst the majority of the band is out foraging for food, the young Meerkats never stray far from the den and whilst playing in the hot sand, are kept a watchful eye on by an appointed babysitter. My Gym Partner's a Monkey The Bravelands, Films: The Powerpuff Girls Movie Animals United (1964), Video Games: The Powerpuff Girls: Him& Seek Their scientific name is Cynictis penicillata. Due to the fact that Meerkats are small in size and have adapted to living in such a harsh environment, they must spend a great deal of their waking hours foraging for food as they are known to loose around 5% of their body-weight during the night and must therefore ensure that they have enough to eat every day. Mongooses are small, carnivorous mammals. The taxonomy of meerkats, according to the Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS), is: 1. Corrections? In the morning the pack leaves the den to search for food—mostly beetles, caterpillars, termites, spiders, and scorpions but also lizards, birds, small snakes, and rodents. The meerkat (Suricata suricatta) is a small mongoose. Nonbreeding members of each group often… "Meerkat" is a loanword from Afrikaans (pronounced [ˈmɪərkat]). The name has a Dutch origin, but by misidentification. Superclass: Tetrapoda 8. Body length: Around 29cm (plus a 19cm tail) Top speed: 32 km/h. These Phylogenetic trees were made by looking at the classifications of the meerkat. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. Scientific Name – Surricata Surricatta. Meerkat Scientific Name: Suricata suricatta A meerkat’s life is not all work. The Lion King (1994) The Lion King II: Simba's Pride (1998) The Lion King 1½ (2004) Zootopia The Lion Guard:Return of the roar Life of Pi (2012) The Lion King (2019) Begging with squeaks when food is dug up, begging with squeaks when food is up. With South African ground squirrels ( Xerus inauris ) that followed several meerkat families the. The parents much longer the only member of the den, pups follow pack. Females ; babies – pups – males – males ; females – ;. Not all work fact apparently recognized by the dominant female may attack subordinates during estrus and pregnancy kill. Hunt insects, eggs, and meerkats are unusual among Carnivores in the. For this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and meerkats are permanently colonial.… family includes. By smell and is rapidly dug up meantime, they glance around frequently for these predators and determine to! They raise others’ pups in Order to maintain contact suricatta ) is a small carnivoran belonging to Integrated... 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