Serval


Common Name: Serval
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata (Vertebrata)
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family: Felidae
Genus: Felinae (Leptailurus)
Species: Serval (L.s. constantina)
Sub Species: Barbary Serval- thought to now be Extinct

Size and Appearance: The Serval is about 23.5-39 in long and can be from 20-40lbs. The Serval resembles a small Cheetah. It has dark spots with a yellowish, orangish coat. It has large, rounded ears and a long neck and long legs. Its tail has several dark rings around it.

Diet: The Serval is nocturnal so it hunts at night. It mainly specializes in rodents but also hunts birds, hares, hyraxes, reptiles, insects, fish, and frogs. The Serval has also been observed hunting larger animals such as deer, gazelles, and springbok. Ninety percent of the Serval's diet is animals under 200lbs.

Distribution: The Serval mainly lives in Sub-Saharan Africa but there are also small populations in South Africa. Some sightings have been reported of Servals in North Africa but there have been none recently.

Social System: Like most big cats, Servals are extremely solitary and interactions are limited to mating. Each gender maintains its own land. Servals communicate with chirps and snarls and other sounds and, like most small big cats, cannot roar.

Habitat: Servals are found in wet Savannah grassy environments. Some Servals live in forests near waterways but forests are limited in Africa so they try to live as close to water as possible.


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A Serval




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A Serval stalking its prey