ANIMAL: Common Dwarf Mongoose Helogale parvula Type of Animal: Mongoose Habitat: Woodlands, thickets, savanna, semi-arid areas, forests, mountainous areas, grassland, bushland, brush, scrub Location(s): East & southern Africa excluding very dense forests, Kalahari Desert, and cape region of S. Africa. Appearance: Very small, speckled brown to reddish animals, pink nose, small ears. Food/Diet: Termites, beetles, grasshoppers, crickets, locusts, grubs, larvae, spiders, scorpions, centipedes, rodents, lizards, snakes including venomous species & python hatchlings, birds, fruits, vegetables, berries, eggs Status in Wild: Stable Conservation: Breeding in zoos Lifestyle: Packs consist of alpha pair (only animals allowed to breed though alpha female may sneak matings w/ subordinate males-alpha female dominant over alpha male), numerous subordinate females, numerous subordinate males, up to 3 litters of pups (2-4 in each litter), 6-12 yearlings, & 6-12 older siblings. Subordinate males are sons of alpha pair & brothers of alpha male, subordinate females daughters of alpha pair & sisters of alpha female. Additional Info: Called: Male Female Young-Pup Group-Pack Weight: Adult-8-11.2 oz Young-4.8 oz Gestation: 1.5 months Height: 2.4 in Body Length: 1.2 ft Life Span: 8 years Tail Length: 6-7.2 in Main predators are raptors, jackals, domestic/feral dogs, wild dogs, caracals, servals, cheetahs, honey badgers, banded mongoose, slender mongoose, egyptian mongoose, pythons, monitors, & venomous snakes. In case of venomous snakes, mongoose pack fights to death w/ snake. If snake wins then mongoose gets eaten, if mongoose wins then snake gets eaten. Mongoose packs will mob larger mongoose species & venomous snakes. Packs very territorial-If pack encounters other pack of similar size on territory, deadly battles occur. Smallest African carnivores. Pack members alternate sentry duty on keeping watch for predators/ rival packs. Territories range from 75-150 acres in size. Territories marked by scent-gland in cheeks & by anal marking. Also scent-mark each other. One of the most social carnivores. Sexually mature at 3 months old but often don’t breed until 3 years old. Kill prey by bite to head. Most of day spent foraging. Fun Fact(s): Have symbiotic relationship w/ hornbills, in which hornbill gives alarm calls to raptors & mongooses then hide. Hornbills also forage w/ packs. Some people keep mongooses as pets because they kill rodents. Persecuted as egg thief by farmers.