Meaning of meerkat in English:


Pronunciation /ˈmɪəkat/

Translate meerkat into Spanish


  • A small southern African mongoose, especially the suricate.

    Suricata and other genera, family Herpestidae: three species

    ‘Over the past year, we have been making a film on meerkats in the southern Kalahari.’
    • ‘There are wallabies, meerkats, flamingoes, maras and tamarin monkeys in both zoos.’
    • ‘Some animals, including meerkats, are able to distinguish between close and more distant relatives and non-relatives.’
    • ‘Faced with a potentially deadly diet, adult meerkats teach their pups how to deal with scorpions and other prey, a new study shows.’
    • ‘Soon after arrival we noticed two meerkats that appeared unusually tame.’


Early 19th century from South African Dutch, from Dutch, ‘long-tailed monkey’, apparently from meer ‘sea’ + kat ‘cat’, but perhaps originally an alteration of a word from an Asian language; compare with Hindi markaṭ ‘ape’.