The average weight of the African civet is about 12kg(26.4lbs). Their body length ranges from 60-80cm(24- 32in) and the tail from 30-45cm(12-18in). Shoulder height averages at about 40cm(16in).
They have a life expectancy of about 15 – 20 years.
The African civet is a stocky animal with a long body and strong hindquarters. It has a short broad neck, pointed muzzle, small rounded ears, small eyes and a bushy tail.
It is easy recognizable by its unique colouration of black and white markings on a grey coat, black band around its eyes and erectile dorsal crest. The face of the African civet closely resembles that of the raccoon
Difference between the male and female
Males and females are similar in size.
The African civet can be found in a wide variety of habitat from dense forests to more open areas. They are solitary animals and prefer denser vegetation in order to protect them from larger predators but it also provides habitat to the smaller animals it preys on. They are nocturnal animals and primarily tree- dwelling creatures that will rest up in trees high above the ground during the day. Although solitary, they will sometimes gather in groups of up to 12 animals during the mating season. Their diet consist out of insects, carrion, eggs and vegetable matter. Food are detected by smell and sound rather than by sight. The musk secreted by the glands close to the reproductive organs has been collected by humans for hundreds of years. This scent became one of the ingredients in some of the most expensive perfumes in the world.
Females normally give birth to a litter of 1-4 young after a gestation period of 3 months. The young gets born in a burrow in the ground dug by other animals. The young leaves the nest after 18 days but still need the care of their mother.