IUCN Red List status:

Least Concern

For more info on classifications visit www.iucnredlist.org

Animal vulnerability index Animal vulnerability index

Meerkats are incredibly social animals! You will always be able to spot at least one of them keeping a lookout…

Meerkats have excellent eyesight and amazing peripheral vision, and will always have a sentry on guard to keep a look out for predators while the rest forage for food. If the meerkat on guard spots danger, it barks loudly or whistles in one of six different ways. For example if the threat is of low, medium or high urgency and if the predator is in the air or on the ground. For a high-urgency land predator alarm call, meerkats will scatter down their nearest burrow entrance, whereas for a high-urgency aerial predator alarm call, they will crouch down and may look skyward.

They love to forage, burrow, groom each other, wrestle and play. They’re also fantastic diggers with sharp claws perfect for making tunnels, and have the ability to close their ears to keep dirt out whilst digging. You may notice their dark face mask around their eye – this helps them reduce glare from the sun. Although they look cute, they have very sharp teeth and aren’t afraid to use them! They eat anything from insects to eggs, lizards and even scorpions!

They live in groups of up to fifty individuals with one female alpha who will then be the only female in the group who will mate. This is called a matriarchal society! The other members of the group will help raise any pups, teaching them to dig for food and to hunt.

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Meerkats live in groups of up to 50 individuals!

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