Namibian Jumping-weasel

I thought I’d pen a quick post about an interesting specimen that I discovered the other day:

It’s a species I’d not heard about before and I was intrigued to discover a bit more about it.

It’s a Namibian Jumping-weasel Mustela jocuverus (Primus, 1881) which is a small mustelid native to Namibia and Botswana. It is very similar in habits to other Weasels and Stoats, but it has a very special adaptation – it jumps.

Now other mustelids also jump as part of their hunting technique, as can be seen in this video clip:

But this mustelid hunts in arid desert conditions and it has little cover from vegetation, making it more dependent on high speed bounding to overtake its prey of small rodents, which it quickly overpowers with a bite to the back of the neck from those impressive canines.

Happy April!