Caracal {Felis Caracal}

South Africa Wildlife

The Caracal {Felis Caracal}

The Caracal

The largest African lesser cat and an exceptional climber and jumper, the caracal is a slenderly built cat with long legs and a short, sharply tapered tail. The Caracal resembles a cross between a leopard and a lynx.

Its coat is reddish-brown with distinctive tufted ears and white markings around its eyes and on its throat, chin, and belly.

Quick Facts

Species: Felis Caracal.
Size: The caracal stands 16 - 20 inches at the shoulder and weighs 40 to 45 pounds.
Habitat: The Caracal is widespread and common, south of the Sahara. It is far more common in Southern than East Africa.

The Caracal
Diet Description: The Caracal feeds on rodents, small antelope, hares and birds and sometimes eats sheep and goats. It is mainly active in the morning and evening although during the hottest months it hunts at night. The Caracal can survive for long periods without drinking as most of the moisture it needs comes from the tissue fluids of its prey.

Reproduction: Sexual maturity occurs at about 20 months. Gestation is 70 - 78 days and between 1 to 4 young are born.

Predators: Humans. Caracal are often killed by farmers, because of predation on their livestock.

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Caracal Information and Photographs
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