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Civet cat

The civet cat Civettictis civetta (Schreber, 1776) – with it’s masked face could be mistaken for the highwayman of African gamepaths. It is the largest representative of the family Viverridae which comprises themselves, suricates, mongoose and genets weighing about 10 – 12kg (22 – 26 pounds). It’s fur is coarse and thick. Erects the mane of long hair down it’s back when attacked or excited. They secrete an oily, tar – like and odiferous substance from perianal glands when excited. They vocalize with a loud pitched cough or a low growl. The limbs are short and black. The rest of the coloration is evident in the images.

These animals are secretive and nocturnal by habit, lying up in dense grass, holes or bush thickets, during daylight hours. They defecate in middens called civetries which are often filled with the remains of millipedes to which they are particularly partial. Most other carnivores find the defensive secretions of millipedes distasteful. Civets are mainly carnivorous, preying on snakes, and small mammals but also readily feed on invertebrates, fruits, berries and other vegetable matter. They wander widely to feed.