Civets and Genets

35 species

Civets and genets are cat-like mammals native to tropical Asia and Africa. Civets have a broadly cat-like general appearance, though the muzzle is extended and often pointed, rather like that of an otter, mongoose, or even possibly a ferret. Some species of civet are very rare and elusive and hardly anything is known about them, the Hose's civet, endemic to the montane forests of northern Borneo, is one of the world's least-known carnivores. Both male and female civets produce a musk (named civet after the animals) which is highly valued as a fragrance and stabilizing agent for perfume. Civets are also unusual among feliforms, and carnivora in general, in that they are omnivores or even herbivores. Many species primarily eat fruit. Some also use flower nectar as a major source of energy. Genets are slender cat-like animals with a long body, a long ringed tail, large ears, a pointed muzzle, and partly retractile claws. Their fur is spotted and they have musk glands, perineal glands, and anal sacs. Genets are highly agile, have quick reflexes, and have exceptional climbing skills. They are the only viverrids able to stand on their hind legs. They walk, trot, run, climb up and down trees, and jump. They live on the ground, but also spend much of their time in trees. They are considered solitary and are omnivorous, opportunistically catching invertebrates and small vertebrates, but also feed on plants and fruit.
Civets and genets are cat-like mammals native to tropical Asia and Africa. Civets have a broadly cat-like general appearance, though the muzzle is extended and often pointed, rather like that of an otter, mongoose, or even possibly a ferret. Some species of civet are very rare and elusive and hardly anything is known about them, the Hose's civet, endemic to the montane forests of northern Borneo, is one of the world's least-known carnivores. Both male and female civets produce a musk (named civet after the animals) which is highly valued as a fragrance and stabilizing agent for perfume. Civets are also unusual among feliforms, and carnivora in general, in that they are omnivores or even herbivores. Many species primarily eat fruit. Some also use flower nectar as a major source of energy. Genets are slender cat-like animals with a long body, a long ringed tail, large ears, a pointed muzzle, and partly retractile claws. Their fur is spotted and they have musk glands, perineal glands, and anal sacs. Genets are highly agile, have quick reflexes, and have exceptional climbing skills. They are the only viverrids able to stand on their hind legs. They walk, trot, run, climb up and down trees, and jump. They live on the ground, but also spend much of their time in trees. They are considered solitary and are omnivorous, opportunistically catching invertebrates and small vertebrates, but also feed on plants and fruit.