Hunting Lynx / Caracal
IDENTIFICATION: A strongly-built cat with large paws. It has tufts of long darker hair on the tips of its ears. It is this feature that was used to name the cat (“karakulak” is Turkish for black ears).
SHOULDER HEIGHT: 40 -45cm
HABITAT: Dry savannah plains, scrub and woodland areas and in the rugged mountainous terrain regions of the deserts. Sufficient shelter is a requirement for Caracal. They are dependent on water.
MASS: 13 – 18kg
BREEDING: Caracal can have up to 6 kittens at a time after a gestation period of 2-3months 71- 79 Days.
DIET: Caracal are carnivores and have very strong jaws. They usually hunt at night during the summer and during the day in colder seasons.
Caracals can survive long periods of time without water, their thirst is satisfied with the body fluids of their prey. Prey is usually in the form of small rodents and hares; however, they are known to attack larger mammals.
CHARACTERISTICS: Their strong hindquarters are used to propel them into the air to catch birds in flight. They have been recorded knocking up to 12 birds out of the air at one time.
The jumping and climbing ability are also used to catch dassies among rocks. Caracals are regarded as vermin by livestock farmers who trap and kill them. This is unfortunate as it is usually only certain individuals that will take livestock but they are, mostly, all targeted for destruction.