Who new meerkats were so adorable! This photographer does a stellar job at capturing these photogenic little creatures in their habitat. You would have never guessed about their surprisingly sophisticated lifestyle in nature.
Meerkats are an extremely social, family oriented type of mongoose that live in the Southern African plains. They are most often found in large groups, each group consisting of several different families that live together in a community. They are best known for the way in which they stand up-right, gazing over the plains on alert for predators. Meerkat’s are burrowing animals, so they spend most of their lives underground away from the boiling African sun. The playful personality of these adorable creatures was captured in a way never before seen by Japanese photographer mamekoro51. Explore the collection of pictures of this meerkat family below.
Though seemingly camera-shy at first…
He seems to warm up to the photographer just fine.
Despite how cute and cuddly they might seem, meerkats are not known to be very friendly toward humans.
Yes, even this innocent looking fellow. They can become more docile with plenty of human exposure over time.
This mother is breastfeeding her young, who will reach full maturity in about 11 months.
Meerkats can live up to 14 years old.
At full maturity, they can weigh up to five and a half pounds, and reach one and a half feet tall.
They certainly are intelligent creatures, too. Their burrowing system is a series of complex underground tunnels, complete with toilet chambers and sleeping rooms.
A pack of meerkats is referred to as a “mob” or “gang”.
Each mob consists of about 50 meerkats, and each family ranges from two to sixteen members.
A mother can birth up to eight pups at one time.
Every mob of meerkat has its own unique scent used to mark territory.
They give thanks to this unique scenting ability from little pouches beneath their tails. This is similar to the way a skunks scent operates.
On top of this unique scent, they also have the ability to recognize the voice of their peers.
Supposedly, these adorable animals are terrified of birds, who prey on meerkat in the wild. They will run for cover if a bird is more than 1000 feet away!
Meerkats diet consists mainly of insects, which they can sniff out using their very subtle sense of smell.
Less primary, but also consisting in their diet is poisonous scorpion, eggs, fruit, small rodents, and lizards.
Meerkat hunt for prey using their large front claws as a weapon.
This trait is also what enables them to be so good at digging.
They might also dig in order to create large dust clouds, this can serve as a great distracting tactic for predators on the hunt.
Even though the population of many species on Earth today seems to be declining, meerkat numbers are holding strong across the globe. They are seemingly resilient and under no threat today. Thank you to mamekoro51 for giving us the visual of how meerkats interact with each other! It is hard to believe how reliant they are on their families and mobs throughout their life. They are an extremely group oriented animal and it greatly attributes to their adorable meerkat families.