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  • Writer's pictureStéphanie Périquet

A spotted rooftop visitor spotted…

Updated: Jan 25, 2022

The roof top of the Visitor Centre is the best spot to watch the sunset (or the sunrise if you are a morning person…), so it should come as no surprise that animals also choose that place to mark their territory right? During a recent visit to the roof, we noticed a pile of scats clearly belonging to a small carnivore. Judging by the location, size and contents of these scats, we concluded they could only belong to a small spotted genet (Genetta genetta).

The latrine at the top of the visitor centre

Genet scats showing the typical carnivore scat shape, hairs and berry contents

This small catlike omnivorous species belongs to the Viverridae family, same as the civets. Weighing 1-2kg, they have a light grey coat with black spots of various sizes and a long (~50cm) banded tail. They are nocturnal and very agile climbers, living alone or in pairs. They feed on a variety of items, including small mammals and birds, but also invertebrates and berries.

Of course, we had to have a closer look at our night visitor and we set a camera trap up there to monitor its coming and going. Here is what we saw...

Olfactory communication is complex in genets, and they often deposit scent-marks from their anal glands along with faeces at communal latrines, so maybe this one is not alone and we will see other individuals up there soon, we'll keep you posted!


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