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Least concern conservation status

Scientific Classification

Binomial nameBassariscus astutus

Range Map

Ringtail range map
Range of species in blue


The ringtail is a species of the raccoon family native to North America. They are also known as the civet cat or bassarisk.

Ringtails are small-sized mammals that can measure about 30-42 cm in body length with a tail averaging 31 to 44 cm in length. They usually weigh 0.7 to 1.5 kilograms.

Their fur is dark brown with light underparts. They are characterized by long whiskers and a body that resembles that of a cat.

Their tail has rings of color with black and white stripes. Ringtails are primarily nocturnal and solitary. They prefer rocky desert habitats.

They feed on small vertebrates, berries and insects as well during spring and summer.