The Natural Habitat of Meerkats

Written by julie martin | 13/05/2017
The Natural Habitat of Meerkats
The meerkat lives in burrows in the desert. (Meerkat image by Daniel Mortell from

Meerkats are a type of mongoose. They are found exclusively in the African deserts, where they live among the brush and hide in burrows.


Meerkats live in a southern part of Africa that is dominated by the Kalahari Desert. The Kalahari has very little rainfall and an arid climate with grassy plains. It covers over one million square miles.


Meerkats live in burrows in the sand. They work together to excavate and build underground dens. The meerkats enter and exit the burrows through holes in the ground. Tunnels connect dens and entrance holes.


The meerkats use the dens for protection, sleeping and breeding. Meerkats use sentinels to keep a lookout for danger.


The temperature in the habitat can reach 115F or 40C. This gives a sand temperature of 158F or 70C. In the winter months, the temperature will drop to 70F or 22C. Winter is also the dry season.


Insects are a meerkat's favourite thing to eat. They consist of 87 per cent of a meerkat's diet. They will also eat spiders, small birds and centipedes.

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