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Marsh Mongoose: 21 Facts You Won't Believe!

Contents

The marsh mongoose (Atilax paludinosus) is native to the wet and swampy grasslands of Africa. Although mostly seen in the water they run fast as well either to hide from the predators or to attack them. These marsh mongooses have quick action ability which helps them to defeat venomous snakes when they are under attack. According to researches this species is known to be widespread throughout the forests of Africa and is known to survive through different natural threats. Generally, nests are built near a hole. In the case of the unavailability of holes, the young are kept in the nests which are made of grass, and sticks, or at times the ones which are made of reeds. The young are found to be fully furred with a pair of closed eyes. The young open their eyes after a week or two from their birth. Within two months of their birth, the young are independent on their feet and can eat food like crabs and fish as a diet on their own.

If you like reading this, you might want to read about addax facts and Cuban solenodon facts.

Marsh Mongoose Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a marsh mongoose?

The marsh mongoose of Africa, belonging to the Atilax genus, is a mongoose.

What class of animal does a marsh mongoose belong to?

The marsh mongoose, or the water mongoose, belongs to the Mammalia class of animals.

How many marsh mongooses are there in the world?

According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), these species are listed under the Least Concern category. Considering these facts the exact number of individuals currently residing on the planet is not known as of now.

Where does a marsh mongoose live?

This mongoose is a mammal from the African sub-Saharan range. The range extends from Senegal towards Ethiopia as well as from South to Southern parts of Africa excluding the range going towards Namibia.

What is a marsh mongoose's habitat?

They are water mongooses, and hence the habitat includes the wet and marshy grasslands and the coastal regions as well. The swampy areas along the rivers and the streams of the Saharan range of Africa are a suitable habitat for this species and their family as well. Watercourses near the forests can be a home to them as well.

Who does marsh mongoose live with?

These species are mostly seen alone or in pairs during the breeding season.

How long does a marsh mongoose live?

This species from Africa have a pretty long lifespan compared to the other mammals residing in the tropical forests. The average lifespan of a water mongoose is around 17 years.

How do they reproduce?

The information related to the reproduction of this species is limited. Although it has been known that the mongooses are noticed to be breeding during the summer season as well as during the rainy season. So, they are known to breed two times a year. Before the gestation period, the females are found building the nests with the help of grasses or sticks. The gestation period lasts for around two to three months which is roughly around 69-80 days. After this period, the female gives birth to around two to three pups or young.

What is their conservation status?

This mongoose (Atilax paludinosus) is listed to be under the Least concern category by IUCN. Although this mammal family is of the Least Concern at the moment, there has been a decreasing trend in their population due to few human activities. These activities include creating links between rivers by making dams, or bridges. Also, hunting terrestrial animals is a major reason behind the decreasing trend as well.

Marsh Mongoose Fun Facts 

What does marsh mongoose look like?

Marsh mongoose facts are loved by kids.

The mongoose (Atilax paludinosus), native to Africa is practically a mammal of the sub-Saharan range. These mammals are fully furred and have a slight brown hue throughout the length of the body. Apart from brown, the fur is reddish in color which might be black at times as well. They have longer hair towards the head and neck and the length shortens towards the legs and the tail. They have five digits on their feet and the sharp claws help them attack their predators when needed. They do not have any webbing on their legs. Both the males and the females produce a foul smell as secretion through the individual anal glands that are located inside a pouch.

How cute are they?

Needless to say, these marsh mongooses are quite scary when it comes to their appearance. Since they are mostly a predator rather than prey, they are generally spotted with a pair of fierce eyes giving them a ferocious look.

How do they communicate?

The water mongoose of Africa is usually seen communicating by generating different sounds or noises. When under attack, these mongooses are noticed to emit a soft noise to warn the other members whereas when excited, a shrill noise, or mostly a cry is emitted.

How big is a marsh mongoose?

A water mongoose has an average weight of around 5.5-6.6 lb (2.5-3 kg) with an average length of 18.8-20.7 in (48-52.5 cm). These mongooses are quite big and are bigger than a small Indian mongoose.

How fast can a marsh mongoose run?

The mongoose (Atilax paludinosus) is pretty quick. Although the exact speed of the mongooses is not known, these animals swim through the rivers and streams in order to catch the aquatic animals.

How much does a Marsh Mongoose weigh?

Marsh mongooses, belonging to the Atilax genus, weigh around 5.5-6.6 lb (2.5-3 kg) on average.

What are the male and female names of the species?

There is no sex-specific name assigned to the male or female members of the species.

What would you call a baby marsh mongoose?

A baby marsh mongoose is usually referred to as a pup.

What do they eat?

Mongooses are omnivores in nature which implies that their diet includes both plants as well as other animals. The marsh mongoose eating habits include food like aquatic animals and fruits. The aquatic animals include crabs, prawns, fish, and a few rats, and mice. Along with these, frogs and snakes are also food to them. Terrestrial species like spiders, birds, and snails are fed on by the mongoose. Occasionally the water mongoose feeds on fruits, seeds, and berries.

Are they poisonous?

There is no information about the marsh mongoose being poisonous. Although this mammal species could be great attackers when it comes to defending themselves from predators like snakes.

Would they make a good pet?

The marsh mongoose or the water mongoose are ferocious mammals of the wild who are known to be ardent attackers at times. Hence it would be not advisable to keep these species as pets or in captivity.

Kidadl Advisory: All pets should only be bought from a reputable source. It is recommended that as a potential pet owner you carry out your own research prior to deciding on your pet of choice. Being a pet owner is very rewarding but it also involves commitment, time and money. Ensure that your pet choice complies with the legislation in your state and/or country. You must never take animals from the wild or disturb their habitat. Please check that the pet you are considering buying is not an endangered species, or listed on the CITES list, and has not been taken from the wild for the pet trade.

Did you know...

These species are known to have a specific smell or scent near their anal gland.

The mongoose is seen breaking their own eggs either by hitting them on a rock or crushing them with their feet.

How does a mongoose catch its prey?

In the case of a water mongoose, they are known to lie down on the ground to lure other animals to come to them. For example, when a bird sits on its anal area, the mongoose catches it.

What are mongooses famous for?

Marsh mongooses are famous for their ferocious behavior against snakes. These species are known to attack snakes that are extremely venomous like cobra snakes.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other mammals from our takin fun facts and bottlenose dolphins facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable mammal coloring pages.

Both images by Derek Keats from Johannesburg, South Africa

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