There’s a caracal on my stoep! Female visits Cape Town chicken coop

Posted by Taylah Strauss on 17 May 2022

A caracal named Hope was captured and collared in the Table Mountain National Park in 2015 – and she was pregnant! Now, nearly seven years later, Hope was seen again snooping around a Cape Town resident’s empty chicken coop. Property owner Jennifer Louw paid the inquisitive feline no mind and allowed her to freely roam around.

READ MORE: Fierce felines: Everything you need to know about the caracal

The Urban Caracal Project is a UCT research initiative dedicated to conserving these elusive felines. The researchers tag and collar the caracals they capture in the wild and observe them over time. They also obtain samples for genetic analysis.

As one of the larger females captured, Hope weighs 8.5 kilograms. Her presence was proof that caracals are thriving – and reproducing – in the Table Mountain area following the recent fires.

Researcher Gabi Leighton commented: ‘Hope is an amazingly resilient adult female caracal who we’ve been monitoring since 2015. While collared, she gave birth to two kittens (who we named Impilo and Luka) and gave us unique, first-time insight into the behaviour of caracals while pregnant and denning. She has been spotted several times around Constantia.’

If you want to see more pictures of Hope living her best life, or the other caracals, click here.

Pictures: Jabsi Louw


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