Caracal Facts

Caracal Facts
Caracal is a species of medium sized wild cat. It looks like a close relative of lynx, even though they are not genetically related. Caracal can be found in Africa, southwestern parts of Asia and Middle East. It inhabits dry and arid regions, woodlands, scrublands, savannas, evergreen and mountain forests. It avoids tropical rainforests. Caracal is often killed by farmers which are trying to protect their livestock. Luckily, population of caracals in the wild is still large and stable. These animals are not on the list of endangered species.
Interesting Caracal Facts:
Caracal can reach 35 to 39 inches in length and 35 to 40 pounds in weight. Males are slightly larger than females.
Body is covered with short fur that can be tan, brown or black in color. Caracal's ears end with tufts of black hair (same morphological feature is characteristic for lynx).
Caracal has excellent sense of hearing. 20 muscles move ears in various directions and adjust their position to collect even the slightest sound of the prey.
Caracal is nocturnal animal (active during the night). It can be active during the day in protected areas (habitats where caracals are not affected by human activity).
Caracal is carnivore (meat-eater). It eats hares, rodents, rabbits, hyraxes, antelopes and birds.
Caracal is fast animal that can accomplish a speed of 50 miles per hour. It can outrun animals such as antelopes and ostriches.
Caracal is not afraid to attack animal that is three times bigger of its size.
Just like leopard, caracal sometimes stores leftovers of food in the trees and bushes.
Caracal does not digest fur. It removes the fur with sharp claws before it starts eating the prey.
Caracal is able to jump 16 feet in the air and to catch a bird in flight. Caracal can catch (and kill) 10 to 12 birds in a single leap. Thanks to that skill, caracals were kept in captivity to entertain Persian royalty in the past.
Caracal is solitary and territorial animal. Size of territory depends on the habitat. It can range from 5 to over 1000 square miles. Male's territory usually overlaps with territories of few nearby females.
Caracal is very vocal animal that can meow, growl, purr and hiss.
Caracal can mate throughout the whole year but it prefers period from October to February.
Pregnancy in females lasts 78 to 81 days and ends with 2 to 6 kittens. Young caracals open their eyes 6 to 10 days after birth. They depend on the mother's milk during the first 10 weeks of their life. Youngsters will stay with their mother until the age of one year. Caracals reach sexual maturity at the age of 12 to 16 months.
Caracal can survive 12 years in the wild and up to 17 years in captivity.

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