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Sleepy Caracal Kitten Naps with Mom at Exmoor Zoo

Caracal hero

The dog days of summer may be coming to a close, but the cat days seem to be just starting: Exmoor Zoo in England welcomed a Caracal kitten in mid-August, and it is a joy to see the mother completely devoted to caring for her new baby. Mom and kitten were spotted taking a lunchtime bath and snooze together about a week ago on August 24. The kitten is pictured at just one week old. The little one still has eyes closed and gets carried around everywhere by mom. Caracal kittens will open their eyes between four and ten days old, and nurse until they are weaned at about ten weeks.

2 Caracal

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See more nap-time photos after the fold!

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In the final photo, mom and kitten are peeking over at the next enclosure where the father is living separately. 

Caracals, sometimes called the Desert Lynx, are found throughout the African continent, as well as in central and southwest Asia and India. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, they are a spcies of Least Concern on the Red List of Threatened Species. However, certain populations are considered more at-risk: their numbers are decreasing in north Africa, central Asia and India. Caracals can live in a wide range of habitats, but prefer dry woodlands and savanas with some herbacious cover and low rainfall. They are threatened by habitat loss and by human persecution because they prey on livestock animals.