One of the study sites, DRY 2, has been relatively quiet. In four weeks, it has recorded fewer than 20 observations, and no large carnivores. Yet this site has produced some pretty cool captures, particularly of small carnivores that we haven’t seen at any other sites:
Cameras at other sites captured two of my favorite species of small carnivores – ones I’ve never seen in the wild. The caracal, a species of cat renowned for its jumping ability when pursuing birds, visited a couple of drinking spots.
The honey badger, commonly considered the most aggressive mammal on the African continent, found a different waterhole. If you are unfamiliar with honey badgers, I recommend this YouTube video. You do not want to challenge one of these guys.
We often overlook these little guys for larger, more glamorous species. Unfortunately, humans negatively impact small carnivores as well as leopards and hyenas. Though very common, wild cats contract diseases from domestic cats. Vehicles and domestic dogs kill huge numbers of striped polecats. People hunt all of these animals because they occasionally eat chickens or livestock.
Small carnivores deserve our attention and our conservation efforts, too.