Critter Science

The Science of Animals


The Tree Loving Coatis

The coatis or coatimundis are relatives of the raccoon that live from Arizona and areas of southern New Mexico in the U.S., through Mexico (except the Baja peninsula and central Sierra Madres) and into Central America, all the way to Panama and into South America in areas west of the Andes), primarily in Colombia. They look like raccoons that have been stretched out a bit. There are 4 species of coatis that are native to North, Central and South America.

First the Stats…

Scientific name: Nasua nasua
Weight: 8.7 lbs.
Length: 1.8 feet, plus a 2 foot tail
Lifespan: Up to 15 years

Now on to the Facts!

1.) Unlike raccoons, coatimundis are diurnal (active during the day). They spend most of day looking for food, resting, and grooming.

2.) Female and baby coatis sleep, eat, & travel in packs of about 30 +/-.

3.) A group of coatis are called a band.

4.) When startled, the entire group will jump into nearby trees, all while emitting “clicks” and “woofs.”

5.) Coatis use their long noses to poke under rocks and into crevices for food. They also use their long claws to dig holes or tear apart rotting logs, in search or a meal.

But wait, there’s more on the coati!

6.) A coati uses its tail for balance while in trees. Their noses can also rotate up to 60°.

7.) Spending a good deal of time in trees, coatis will even mate in the trees, making nests for their young amongst the branches.

Did you know…?
Their ankles are double jointed and very flexible, this allows them to descend trees headfirst!

8.) Their young stay in the nest with their mother for 5 – 6 weeks before she joins back up with the band.

9.) Coatis produce snorting, chirping, and grunting noises to display its mood and to alert other members of the band of pending danger.

10.) Their main predators are jaguars, pumas, birds of prey, snakes and crocodiles.

Now a Short Coati Video!

Learn more about all kinds of cool critters here.

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Critter Man

With over 40 years of critter experience to my credit and hundreds of zoology teaching hours to people around the world, I have amassed not only a continuing thirst for critter knowledge but a desire to teach others all I can about the majesty and wonder of our natural world. Critter Science is a culmination of such knowledge.I have hands on as well as book acquired intel on all kinds of critters. Whether they're on land, sea, or air.I will never say that I know everything about all animals. That's impossible, even for a savant. But, that being said, ask me any animal question and I'll answer it. If I don't know the answer, I'll get an answer for you!Let it be said that I have been oft times accused of loving animals more than I love people. I can neither confirm nor deny this.

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