/rayt"l, raht"l/, n.
a badgerlike carnivore, Mellivora capensis, of Africa and India. Also called honey badger.
[1770-80; < Afrik < D dial. ratel, var. of raat honeycomb; perh. orig. a compound with this word, referring to the animal's fondness for honey]

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also called  Honey Badger 

      (Mellivora capensis), badgerlike member of the weasel family (Mustelidae) noted for its fondness for honey. Ratels live in covered and forested regions of Africa and southern Asia. The adult stands 25–30 cm (10–12 inches) at the shoulder and has a heavily built, thick-skinned body about 60–77 cm (24–30 inches) long, plus a tail length of 20–30 cm. The ears are rudimentary; the upper body parts are whitish, but the lower parts, face, and legs are black—the two colours sharply separated.

      Ratels are nocturnal and live in burrows dug with their strong, incurved front claws. They feed on small animals and fruit and on honey, which they find by following the calls of a bird, the greater, or black-throated, honey guide (Indicator indicator); the ratels break open the bees' nests to feed on the honey, and the birds in return obtain the remains of the nest. Ratels are strong, fearless fighters but in captivity can become tame and playful. A litter usually consists of two cubs.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • ratel — ratel …   Dictionnaire des rimes

  • Ratel — 20 Südafrikanischer Ratel 90 Allgemeine Eigenschaften …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • ratel — [ ratɛl ] n. m. • 1846; de rat ♦ Zool. Mammifère carnivore, sorte de blaireau, très friand de miel. ● ratel nom masculin (de rat) Mammifère carnivore (mustélidé) des régions chaudes de l Ancien Monde, très voisin du blaireau, omnivore, agressif,… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Ratel — Ra tel (r[=a] t[e^]l), n. [F.] (Zo[ o]l.) Any carnivore of the genus {Mellivora}, allied to the weasels and the skunks; called also {honey badger}. [1913 Webster] Note: Several species are known in Africa and India. The Cape ratel ({Mellivora… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Ratel [1] — Ratel (Rotal), das marokkanische Pfund = 508 Grammes = 1,016 deutsches Zollpfund …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Ratel [2] — Ratel, Säugthier, so v.w. Waschbär …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Ratel — Ratel, Säugetier, s. Honigdachs …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Ratel — Ratel, Gewicht, s. Artal …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Ratel [2] — Ratel, der Honigdachs (s.d.) …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Ratel — Ratel, Rotal, orientalisches Gewicht etwa – 1 Pfd …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • Ratel —   [afrikaans] der, s/ , der Honigdachs.   …   Universal-Lexikon

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