The Meerkat (Suricata suricatta) is a small mongoose found in southern Africa. It is characterized by a broad head, large eyes, a pointed snout, long legs, a thin tapering tail, and a brindled coat pattern. The coat is light grey to yellowish-brown with alternate, poorly defined light and dark bands on the back. Meerkats have foreclaws adapted for digging and have the ability to thermoregulate to survive in their harsh, dry habitat. They are famed for their upright posture. They often stand on their rear legs and gaze alertly over the southern African plains where they live. Mothers can even nurse their young while standing.