The purpose of the caracal’s (Caracal caracal) characteristic long black ear tufts is still debated. They may
Caracal 2

At the Cincinnati Zoo

enhance facial expressions and are used as signals in communication. Another theory is that the ear tufts contribute to the caracal’s hearing ability. In any case, the caracal’s tufts are longer than on bobcat and lynx.


  • Length: 1.8 to 2.5 ft
  • Weight: 35 to 61 lbs
  • Lifespan: Up to 20 yrs
  • Range: Africa and southwestern Asia
  • Habitat: Savannah, scrubland, and semi-desert
  • Diet: Rodents, hyraxes, hares, small antelopes, and birds
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