We are based on one of the most beautiful cattle and alfalfa (lusern) farms in Oudtshoorn, home of De Zeekoe Guest farm, the original meerkat conservation site. Let our generation preserve the last frontier.
All Information and photos on this site are from my own research and is based on findings and information from seven or eight groups of meerkats that I have worked with around Oudtshoorn in the Little Karoo (South Africa).
Only basic information like weight and ages is taken from other web sites, for I have not caught any meerkats to weigh yet. You must understand that I have only been researching meerkats since late 2008 when I noticed that the meerkats that I was observing every day were living in an unnatural meerkat habitat.
Meerkats and other animals are sold on the black market worldwide as pets. All baby animals are so adorable until they grow up.
FACT: All WILD animals will turn on their owners in some way when they grow up.
Why would they turn on the hand that feeds them?
All animals are born with certain instincts, which need to be stimulated.
Animals don't see you as an owner or friend but as a member of their herd or group. That would go with all the challenges that would go with establishing the leaders in the herd. If and when they challenge you for authority and you do not respond in the right way it mostly end nasty.
Horses would push, bite or kick you to establish authority.
Goats and antelope will shove with their horns and heads.
Cat and dog species would growl, scratch or bite.
And when you then move back or run from the animal you submit to it’s authority.
All these behaviours are all natural ways to establish authority, and are then seen as bad behaviour. These animals are not so cute anymore and are then abandoned or kept in very small cages.
Meerkats are born with one or two main instincts (digging and marking their territory and troop members). All these are seen as very bad behaviour. Especially if they dig up your carpets and furniture and urinate on your furniture and person. The rest of their behaviour, like what to eat and how to raise their babies are all shown to them by their parents.
Remember, that pets are a fulltime responsibility, and they cannot be shoved onto someone else when you go on holiday. They always end up at some rehab centre or animal sanctuary, all of which costs a lot of money to maintain. In the case of meerkats, there is no real meerkat sanctuary in Africa and all orphaned meerkats end up in zoos where these establishments are forced to put them in very small enclosures that are not suitable for active roaming animals.