Scientific Name:

Caracal Caracal

Nicknames

Desert Lynx, Persian Lynx, or African Lynx

Physical Attributes

The caracal ranges in weight of 15 to 44 pounds and is 30 to 41 inches long, which classifies them as a slender, medium-sized cat. Their coat is tan, brown, or black and young caracals have reddish spots on the underbelly that disappear when they get older. The standout characteristics of the caracal are the large black ears with tufts and their long hind legs. Their ears have over 20 muscles that allow them to detect prey.

Life Span

12 years in the wild, 17 years in captivity.

Native location/Habitat

Dry woodland and savannah in Africa, central Asia, and southwest Asia into India. Prefers the grasslands and desert.

Similar Species

The caracal is often mistaken as the African golden cat because of their similar coat color and texture and is distantly related. The serval and caracals are both medium-sized nocturnal cats found in Africa, but the serval has a drastically different appearance with a coat of spots.