The zorilla resembles a miniature skunk weighing between 1 and 2.5 lb.

The zorilla (Ictonyx striatus) is sometimes called the striped polecat. Although it resembles both the spotted skunk and the American striped skunk, they are in totally different genera. The zorilla weighs between 1.5 to 3 LB with the male being larger than the female. They have a vertically elongated white spot on the forehead between their eyes and a white patch from above the eye to the ear and backward to make a near triangle-shaped patch. They have stripes from the top of the head to the tail. The tail is white or white and black hairs, mixed. The female has four teats. They have large scent glands which can be used in defense behaviors. Although it is not as pungent as the American Striped skunk, it is nonetheless unpleasant and long-lasting.

This view of a young zorilla's back shows the beautiful pattern formed by the stripes.

They eat rodents, insects, eggs and other similar fare. They become sexually mature at 10-20 months, the latter for males. Gestation is about 37 days with a litter size of 1 to 3. Babies weigh just 1/2 ounce when born. They are weaned at 4 to 5 months of age.

The zorilla has snow white stripes on coal black background.
In Captivity
Zorillas must be descented in captivity because of their capacity to spray fluids from their scent glands when disturbed. We have found their scent glands to be unusually large for such a small animal so descenting is more than prudent.

We feed a mixture of ground chicken, including bones, horse meat, and mix with ground cat chow, vitamins and minerals and water. We mix a large batch and freeze it in individual portions. We furnish a complete diet and care instructions with all of our animals.

Additional Photos:

Petunia gives 'nose hugs'.


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