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  • The word “kinkajou” means “honey bear”. The animal from South American with a long tail is called so because it likes to eat honey.

    However, these cute with protruding snout animals resemble a bear very little, they more like lemurs or weasel. But scientists after some investigations made a conclusion that animals belong to the family Procyonidae (raccoons).

    Kinkajou or American potto has a body length of 43-56 cm. The same size has rounded tail covered by hair. Animals use this tail to cling the branches. Kinkajou weighs between two and six pounds. Animal’s head and ears are round, eyes are rather large and slightly convex.

    American potto’s body is long, but paws, in comparison with the body are relatively short, with strongly curved sharp claws. Hair is dense, soft and short. It has a reddish brown color on the back with olive or yellowish tinge. There is a dark stripe in the middle of the back of some individuals. The belly fur is lighter, sometimes even golden-yellow.

    Honey bears’ homeland is Central and South America. Also it possible to find them on the coast and at an altitude of 2500 m. Only rainforests are a habitat of kinkajou.

    Besides honey, American potto eats flowers, insects, small vertebrates, fruits, bird eggs and sometimes chicks. When they lick nectar by a long tongue, pollen sticks to the face, and animals spread it in the woods, what’s why they are called “gardeners of the jungle”.

    Kinkajou are wood inhabitants, they are active at night and sleep during the day in tree hollows. Mostly they are single and meet with neighbors only for mating, but sometimes they reported about kinkajou’s small and unstable family unions.

    South American jaguars and smaller cats such as an ocelot or oncilla are natural enemies of kinkajou.

    Honey bears females are pregnant for 3-4 months. New delivered cubs weigh up to 200 grams, and their length is about 30 cm. Kinkajou’s procreation period is a whole year, but in some areas of their habitat the mating season is April and May.

    Kinkajou are not protected because extinction does not threats them yet, but because of the damage of tropical forests and human active extermination for their gourmet meat and skin, the situation can change.