Caracals have brown to red coats, with color varying among individuals. Females are typically lighter than males. Their undersides are white and, similar to African golden cats, are adorned with many small spots. The face has black markings on the whisker pads, around the eyes, above the eyes and faintly down the center of the head and nose. The trademark features of caracals are their elongated and black-tufted ears. The legs are relatively long and the hind legs are disproportionately tall and well muscled. The tail is short. Eye color varies from golden or copper to green or grey. Melanistic individuals have been reported, but are extremely rare. Juveniles differ in their shorter ear tufts and blue tinted eyes. Subspecies of C. caracal may not be distinguishable by phenotype. Females are smaller and at or below 13 kg, while males can be up to 20 kg. It is possible for a large female to weigh more than a small male. Although the tail is short, it still makes up a significant portion of the total body length. Tail length ranges from 18 cm (7 in) to 34 cm (13 in). Head and body length is measured from the nose to the base of the tail and ranges from 62 to 91 cm (about 24 in to 36 in). Even the smallest adult caracal is larger than most domestic cats.
Range mass: 8 to 19 kg.
Range length: 80 to 125 cm.
Other Physical Features: endothermic ; homoiothermic; bilateral symmetry
Sexual Dimorphism: male larger
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