Meerkat Survival Tactics

Meerkat Survival Tactics

Clever creatures master predators and prey.


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Meerkats teach their young pups amazing behaviors and survival tactics. Meerkats are predators. They eat dangerous prey such as toxic millipedes and poisonous scorpions. In order to survive these hazardous food sources, meerkats teach the pups to remove stingers and toxins before eating them.

Fast Fact

  • One defense tactic used by meerkat groups is to stand upright, puff up their fur, and band together. This forms an intimidating group.

Fast Fact

  • Meerkats cleverly defend themselves by stirring up dust (to hide) before they retreat to a bolthole, or temporary burrow.

Fast Fact

  • Meerkats defend themselves by standing upright and puffing up their fur. When a group of meerkats does this, it helps scare off predators.

Fast Fact

  • Other times meerkats hide by stirring up dust so a predator can't see them. By the time the dust clears, the meerkats have escaped into a special burrow called a bolthole.
Media Credits

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Jeanne Wallace-Weaver, Educational Consultant
Anne Haywood, National Geographic Society
National Geographic Program
Meerkats, National Geographic Programs
Alison Michel
Last Updated

October 19, 2023

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