The coati is a medium-sized mammal only found on the American continent. The coati is found widely distributed across North, Central and South in a number of different habitats. The coati is primarily found in dense forests and wet jungles as the coati will spend a great deal of its life in the safety of the trees. However, there are also coati populations inhabiting grasslands, mountains and even deserts across the continent.
Coatis are members of the Procyonidae family, a group of New World animals that includes kinkajous, ringtails, olingos, and raccoons. The family resemblance appears strongest between coatis and raccoons, but coatis have a longer nose, body, and tail than raccoons.
There are four different species of coati, two of which, the Ring-tailed Coati and the Mountain Coati, are found in South America, and the remaining two coati species, the White-nosed Coati and the Cozumel Island Coati, are both found in Mexico. The Ring-tailed Coati is found in the jungles and rainforests of South America, where it lives both on the ground and in the trees. The Ring-tailed Coati has thick, tan colored fur and black bands running along its tail. The Mountain Coati is found inhabiting areas of the Andes Mountain range in western South America. The Mountain Coati is also the smallest species of coati and is sometimes called the Dwarf Coati. The White-nosed Coati found in parts of North America and throughout Central America, including Mexico. The White-nosed Coati is the largest species of coati with some individuals growing to nearly 120 cm in length. The Cozumel Island Coati is found only on the Mexican island of Cozumel, and is thought to have been taken there by the Mayans. Despite the obvious similarities between the Cozumel Island Coati and the White-nosed Coati, the Cozumel Island Coati is considered to be a separate species.
Female coatis live in groups of between 10 and 30 individuals, known as a band. The male coati is a solitary animal and only comes together with the females to mate.
The coati is a nocturnal and omnivorous animal, meaning that the coati eats both plants and animals during the darkness of night. The coati eats a variety of different fruits, nuts and seeds, along with insects, bird's eggs, rodents and small reptiles such as lizards and snakes.
Due to the generally small size of the coati, the coati has numerous predators within its natural environment. Jaguars and pumas, along with other large wildcats, are the main predators of the coati, along with birds of prey, snakes and crocodiles.
The coati breeds at the start of the rainy season which occurs at different times of the year, depending on the region, when there is an abundance of food. The female coati leaves the band of coatis and builds a nest in the trees or on a rocky ledge, where she gives birth to between 2 and 7 coati babies after a gestation period of nearly 3 months Baby coatis are called "Kits". The baby coatis rejoin the band of coatis with their mother, when they are about 6 weeks old.
Due to the coati's endearing face and house-cat size, people sometimes see them as potential pets. Not a good idea-every bit of their behavior and biology are adapted to their survival as a wild animal. An inquiring mind, extreme climbing ability, super-dexterous digits, scent-marking behavior, and a determination to get into everything are just some of the things that should rule out the coati as a pet.
In the wild, coatis live for about seven to eight years, while in captivity they can live for up to 15/16 years. We have a white nosed coati named Bandit and a ring-tailed coati named Taz. If you would like to meet him give us a call or send us an email.