Wednesday, December 8, 2010
New babies arrive all the time at Harnas--often injured ones, orphaned babies, or abandoned pets--and Marieta always takes them in. This week it is two baby caracal orphans--only hours old.
Caracals are very similar to American lynx. Caracals look like large tan housecats with ears that stand up with black and white tufts. They live in the wild and eat small rodents. And they can jump so high that they also bring down birds in flight. I kid you not. I tried to upload a video of it, but after an hour of waiting, I gave up. It looks like still pictures is all I can handle from Africa this trip. Here's one of a couple of them sitting. If you want to see the jumping one, there's a great one in my book.
The babies are the size of kittens, though, and their eyes aren't open yet. Marieta has to feed them every two hours with a doll-size bottle of special formula. They sleep in a basket in a pile of soft blankets to keep them warm. Originally there were four in the litter, but two died, so we're all pulling for these last two. So far they seem to be eating all right and seem strong (or at least as strong as a kitten can be who is only 2 days old).
They're just as cute as buttons, but a lot softer.