From southwest Oregon and Texas to southern Mexico.
Weeded slopes and rocky terrain near water
A small, alert cousin of the raccoon with shorter limbs, and soft thick gray-tan fur and an enormous fluffy tail, striped with black and white rings. The muzzle is sharp and face broad; white patches set off dark eyes.
The cacomistle is nocturnal and omnivorous and is a great leaper and climber, thanks to its semi-retractile claws and long tail for balancing. Generally this is a quiet, solitary animal, but when cornered or upset it can bark, snarl or scream; the young make a metallic squeak.
They have from one to five young (usually three) born in May to June after an unknown period of gestation (estimated 40-70 days). The kits are born blind, deaf, and toothless. They are weaned at three weeks and their eyes open at 4-5 weeks. By two months of age they hunt with parents, both of who contribute to their welfare.
The cacomistle often inhabits deserted dwellings and Indian ruins. It is sometimes called the ring-tailed cat, though not related to cats.
|Did YOU Know?|
|The name cacomistle comes from an Aztec word meaning "half cat" or "half mountain lion"|
|Length:||25 - 32 inches|
|Weight:||2 - 3 pounds|
|Wild Diet:||Mice and fruit. They especially like bananas|
|Predators:||Primarily owls and large carnivores|
|USFWS Status:||Not Listed|
|CITES Status:||Not Listed|
|Where at the Zoo?||Small Animal Building|