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Small Spotted Genet

wildlife of Namibia

Introduction: The small-spotted genet (Genetta genetta) is a short legged species with an elongated body and a white ringed tail. The spots on the body are in general smaller than those of the large-spotted genet and it has a characteristic feature of a dark central dorsal band from just behind the shoulders to the base of the tail. They occur in woodland savannah, using the more open areas of woodland and dry grassland.

It is a strictly nocturnal species and they are predominately solitary creatures or in two's. They are proficient climbers and will take to trees voluntarily when hunting or under duress. Most of their activity is spent on the ground and when there are no trees for them to climb, as is often the case in Namibia, they take refuge in holes in the ground to rest up in daylight hours.

Distribution: The small-spotted genet is widespread throughout Namibia, apart from the Namib Desert.

Diet: When stalking prey, movement can be slow until a favourable position is reached for the final rush to kill. Insects, small rodents and reptiles are there favourite food.

Colouring: The body is spotted, with a dark central dorsal band running from behind the shoulders to the base of the tail.

Breeding: A gestation period of around 10-11 weeks coincides with young being born in the warm, wet months of the year from August to April. Litters are 2-4 on average and females litter down in holes in disused aardvark and spring hare holes in termite mounds.

Size: Males are similar in size to the large-spotted genet at 45cm shoulder height, 1m in length and weighing around 2-3kg. Females are a bit shorter and lighter.

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Wildlife Namibia

  • Namibian Wildlife: Small Spotted Genet
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