Mar 17, 2012

Caracal (Caracal caracal)

Did you know?

That each of the ears of the caracal is controlled by about 20 muscles to help the hunters to better determine if the dam goes down and that the tufts of hair are an additional advantage in the location of the dam?

The caracal is a medium-sized cat with long legs and short tail (23-32 cm). The body profile is quadratic. The head-body length is 62-82 cm, shoulder height is about 45 cm.The weight of 8.14 kg, with large males reach 18 kg. The females are lighter than males. It features dark spots on both sides of the nose and two small vertical bars above the eyes. The ears are quite close to each other. Are large and erect tufts of hair at the tip (about 50 mm). The backs of the ears are entirely black or white hairs.The coat is dense, short and closed in the back, longer, more flexible and woolly in the womb. Uniform color is brick red or reddish sand. The underparts are creamy beige.

The caracal is mainly nocturnal and solitary. They hunt prey such as small to medium Dassies, hares, birds, mongoose, mountain deer, jackals, rodents and can cause damage to small cattlemen killing young sheep and goat. They kill with a bite on the neck. After a gestation period of about 69-78 days, the female gives birth to a litter of 2-6, more usually 3 kittens that are weaned at about 10 weeks.

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