Bookmarkable URL:http://hdl.handle.net/10217/52194

Scientific Classification

Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
Class:Mammalia
Order:Carnivora
Family:Mustelidae
Genus:Ictonyx
Genus species:Ictonyx striatus

Animal Characteristics

Head-Body Length:30-38 cm
Height:10-15 cm
Weight:600-1400 g
Identification:The African polecat is mostly black with white stripes and a white tail. Their underside is black.
Habitat:Grasslands, steppes
Diet:Carnivore: invertebrates, rats, reptiles, hares
Reproduction:One to four baby polecats are born, blind and naked, after a gestation period of 36 days. After leaving the den at two months of age, they will accompany their mother for several months.
Polecats are solitary animals but may be found in pairs or family parties.
Behavior:This nocturnal species usually hunts between 10 p.m. and dawn. If threatened, they will squirt noxious anal secretions at the attacker.
Status:No special status
Interesting Facts:As a defense mechanism, the polecat will spray its aggressor with a foul-smelling fluid from its anal glands.

Other Information

Geographic:Sub-Saharan Africa Date:1958-1988 Subjects:weasel
African polecat
Zorilla
Mustelidae
Carnivora
Mammals
Vertebrates
Chordata
Predatory animals