SENTINEL MEERKAT is a digital photograph by Carla Parris.
Meerkats, also called suricates, are small, weasel-like, burrowing animals which are members of the mongoose family.
Meerkats are well suited for digging. They have long, nonretractable claws on each of their four toes on each foot; ears that close to keep sand out while digging; and a special membrane on their eyes to protect them while burrowing.
To keep safe while foraging, meerkats take turns as look-outs, standing upright on two legs, using their tail to balance, on a high rock or mound.
While things are safe, the guard emits a low, constant peeping, known as the watchman�s song. When a predator is spotted, the sentry gives a warning bark or whistle so that group members can take refuge in holes scattered throughout their territory.
Meerkats have long horizontal pupils which give them a wide range of vision. The dark patches around their eyes reduce the glare from the sun.
This gentle looking meerkat was phot...