White-Nosed Coati

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White-Nosed Coati

 

(Nasua narica), a predatory mammal of the family Procyonidae. The body length is 41–67 cm, and the tail length is 32–69 cm. The animal weighs up to 11.3 kg. The white-nosed coati is brownish gray or black above and whitish below. The tail is banded with light and dark rings. The elongated nose is very mobile.

The white-nosed coati lives in subtropical and tropical forests of southwestern North America and of Central and South America. An agile tree climber, it uses its tail as a balancing and prehensile organ. The mammal builds its den in hollow logs, among rocks, or in a depression in the ground. White-nosed coatis stay in groups of five or six individuals (sometimes as many as 40); old animals often live alone. They are active day and night; they forage only on the ground, eating vegetation and small animals. White-nosed coatis mate once a year, producing two to six young in each litter. The animals sometimes damage crops and kill domestic birds. Their meat is used as food. Some zoologists distinguish three species of the genus Nasua.