COMMON NAME: Meerkat, Suricate
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Suricata suricatta
DIET: Meerkats are mainly insectivores, which means they mostly eat insects. They also eat lizards, snakes, plants, eggs, centipedes and scorpions. Meerkats are immune to the poisonous venom of scorpions.
YOUNG: A female can have 1 to 5 pups in her litter, with 3 pups being the most common litter size. The Meerkat pups are allowed to leave the burrow when they are 3 weeks old.
HABITAT: The Kalahari Desert of Botswana and South Africa
- Meerkats are not cats. The word "markata" means "monkey" in Sanskit (Indian) and the word "meerkat" means "lake cat" in Dutch.
- They live in large "colonies" of 20-30 members.
- They forage for food all day long. When the colony forages, one Meerkat is posted as a guard.