African Civet

Secretes up to 4g of musk every week!
African Civet Scientific Classification
Scientific name
Civettictis civetta
African Civet Physical Characteristics
Brown, Grey, Yellow, Black, White, Tan
15 – 20 years
1.4kg – 4.5kg (3lbs – 10lbs)
African Civet Distribition

African Civet Classification and Evolution

The African Civet is a big species of Civet determined throughout sub-Saharan Africa. The African Civet is the simplest final member in its genetic institution and is taken into consideration to be the biggest Civet-like animal at the African continent. Despite their cat-like look and behaviours, the African Civets aren’t pussycats in any respect however are in truth, greater carefully associated with different small carnivores consisting of Weasels and Mongooses. The African Civet is maximum widely known for the musk that it secretes to mark its territory (referred to as Civetone), which has been used withinside the production of perfumes for centuries, and its placing black and white markings, make the African Civet one of the easiest Civet species to identify.

African Civet Anatomy and Appearance

One of the African Civet’s maximum one of a kind capabilities are the black and white markings on their fur and gray face, which together with the black band round their eyes, offers those animals a Raccoon-like look. The similarity is simplest heightened through the truth that the African Civet’s hind legs are pretty a piece longer than the the front legs, making its stance very distinctive to that of a Mongoose. The common grownup African Civet has a frame period of round 70cm with almost the equal period tail on pinnacle of that. The paws of the African Civet every have 5 digits with non-retractable claws to allow the Civet to transport approximately withinside the timber greater without difficulty.

African Civet Distribution and Habitat

The African Civet is determined in numerous habitats at the African continent, with its variety extending from coast to coast in sub-Saharan Africa. African Civets are maximum usually determined in tropical forests and jungles and regions wherein there’s masses of dense flora to offer each cowl and animals that the African Civets feeds on. African Civets are by no means determined in arid areas and constantly need to be in a place which has an amazing water source. Despite this though, it isn’t always unusual for African Civets to be determined alongside rivers that lead into the greater arid areas. They are succesful swimmers and regularly spend their time searching and resting withinside the timber in addition to at the ground.

African Civet Behaviour and Lifestyle

The African Civet is a solitary animal that simplest comes out below the quilt of night time to seek and seize meals. These nocturnal animals are often tree-living creatures that spend maximum of the daylight resting withinside the protection of the timber excessive above. African Civets have a tendency to be maximum lively simply after sundown however generally tend to seek in regions that also offer masses of cowl. Despite being normally very solitary creatures, the African Civet has been acknowledged to accumulate in businesses of up to fifteen participants mainly in the course of the mating season. They also are extraordinarily territorial animals, marking their barriers with the heady fragrance launched through their perineal glands.

African Civet Reproduction and Life Cycles

The simplest time while African Civets appear to be visible collectively is while they’re mating. The lady African Civet generally offers start to as much as four younger after a gestation duration that lasts for multiple months. The lady African Civet nests in an underground burrow that has been dug through any other animal with a view to thoroughly increase her younger. Unlike lots of their carnivorous relatives, Civet toddlers are generally born pretty cell and with their fur. The toddlers are nursed through their mom till they’re sturdy sufficient to fend for themselves. African Civets can stay for up to 20 years, despite the fact that many not often get to be this old.

African Civet Diet and Prey

Despite the truth that the African Civet is a carnivorous mammal, it has a completely various weight loss plan that includes each animal and plant matter. Small animals which includes Rodents, Lizards, Snakes and Frogs make up the bulk of the African Civet’s weight loss plan, together with Insects, berries and fallen end result that it reveals at the wooded area floor. The African Civet predominantly makes use of its enamel and mouth to accumulate meals rather than the usage of its paws. This approach of ingesting manner that the African Civet can use its forty sharp enamel efficaciously to interrupt its seize down, and the sturdy jaw of the African Civet makes it more difficult for its meal to attempt to escape.

African Civet Predators and Threats

Despite being a secretive but a notably ferocious predator, the African Civet is sincerely preyed upon through some of different predators inside their herbal environment. Large predatory Cats are the maximum not unusualplace predators of the African Civet consisting of Lions and Leopards together with reptiles which includes big Snakes and Crocodiles. African Civet populations also are below chance from each habitat loss and deforestation, and had been difficulty to trophy hunters withinside the past, throughout the continent. One of the most important threats to the African Civet is the need for his or her musk.

African Civet Interesting Facts and Features

The musk secreted through the glands near the African Civet’s reproductive organs has been accumulated through Humans for masses of years. In its focused form, the scent is stated to be pretty offensive to people, however a whole lot greater high-quality as soon as diluted. It become this heady fragrance that have become one of the elements in a number of the maximum high-priced perfumes withinside the world (and made the African Civet a famous African animal). African Civets are acknowledged to hold the rabies disease, that is reduced in size thru touch with an already inflamed animal. The African Civet is likewise acknowledged to apply distinct regions round its territory, wherein it can visit the toilet.

African Civet Relationship with Humans

Each African Civet secretes as much as 4g of musk every week, that is generally accumulated from African Civets withinside the wild. However, the shooting and preserving of African Civets for his or her musk isn’t always unknown and is stated to be an extremely merciless industry. Today, few perfumes nonetheless comprise real musk from the glands of an African Civet as many scents these days are without difficulty reproduced artificially. Although it’s miles a covered but now no longer an endangered animal, the African Civet populations have additionally been critically laid low with Human hunters, who hunt those little carnivores to clearly upload their pores and skin to the trophy cabinet.

African Civet Conservation Status and Life Today

Today, the African Civet is below chance from deforestation and consequently drastic lack of a whole lot of its herbal habitat. The most important cause for such massive deforestation withinside the place is both for logging or to clean the land to make manner for palm oil plantations. The African Civet is indexed as being Least Concern, this means that that there’s little chance in the interim that the African Civet becomes extinct withinside the close to future.


  1. David Burnie, Dorling Kindersley (2011) Animal, The Definitive Visual Guide To The World’s Wildlife
  2. Tom Jackson, Lorenz Books (2007) The World Encyclopedia Of Animals
  3. David Burnie, Kingfisher (2011) The Kingfisher Animal Encyclopedia
  4. Richard Mackay, University of California Press (2009) The Atlas Of Endangered Species
  5. David Burnie, Dorling Kindersley (2008) Illustrated Encyclopedia Of Animals
  6. Dorling Kindersley (2006) Dorling Kindersley Encyclopedia Of Animals
  7. David W. Macdonald, Oxford University Press (2010) The Encyclopedia Of Mammals
  8. About African Civets, Available here:
  9. Civet Scent Glands, Available here:
  10. African Civet Benhaviour, Available here:
  11. The African Civet, Available here:

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