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Ringtail Range Map (North America)
Ringtail Range Map (North America)
Attribution: IUCN, species assessors & spatial data authors

Photographer: Robert Body
Latin Name Bassariscus astutus
Conservation Status Least Concern
Location North America
Colour Buff
Length 30 - 42 cms (12 - 16.5 inches)
Tail 31 - 44 cms (12 - 17.5 inches)
Weight 0.8 - 1.5 Kgs (1.8 - 3.3 lbs)
Life Expectancy

7 Yrs (Wild)
Up to 16 Yrs (in Captivity)

Main Characteristics

Ringtails have a body length between 30 and 42 cms (12 - 16.5 inches), a tail length between 31 and 44 cms (12 - 17.5 inches) and they weigh between 0.8 and 1.5 kgs (1.8 - 3.3 lbs).

They are buff in colour with a pale coloured underside. They have distinctive tail that is ringed in black and white.


Ringtails can be found in a variety of habitats at elevations up to 2,900 m (9,515 ft) in North America.


Ringtails are omnivores and they feed upon small rodents, rabbits, birds, lizards, snakes, frogs, insects, carrion, eggs, fruits and berries.


After a gestation period of 51 - 60 days, Ringtails give birth to 2 - 3 youngsters.


Predators of Ringtails include great horned owls, raccoons, foxes, coyotes and bobcats.


Subspecies of the Ringtail are:

Bassariscus astutus arizonensis
Bassariscus astutus astutus
Bassariscus astutus bolei
Bassariscus astutus consitus
Bassariscus astutus flavus
Bassariscus astutus insulicola
Bassariscus astutus macdougalli
Bassariscus astutus nevadensis
Bassariscus astutus octavus
Bassariscus astutus palmarius
Bassariscus astutus raptor
Bassariscus astutus saxicola
Bassariscus astutus willetti
Bassariscus astutus yumanensis

Interesting Facts

Ringtails are also known as:
Ringtail Cat
Ring-tailed Cat
Miner's Cat

They are also sometimes known as a Cacomistle, but they shouldn't be confused with the species bassariscus sumichrasti.

Similar Animals

Red Panda
Common Raccoon
Crab-Eating Raccoon
Mountain Coati
White-Nosed Coati
South American Coati


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