In Africa, Cats Are Riding Rhinos

This is the first video ever capture of a cat riding a rhino. And man, it does not look like an easy ride. It’s basically a real life Timon and Pumbaa.

The “cat” in question is actually a genet, a relative of the mongoose that has a long snout, large ears, a cat-like body and long tail, but shorter legs. Their fur is spotted like that of a leopard. They’re agile creatures that can run, jump and climb, and do so to catch insects and small reptiles and mammals. They live across Africa.


Genets have been captured riding on large mamals — typically water buffaloes — before. This endangered black rhino is much rarer, so seeing a genet aboard one is an even more exceptional event.

Illustration for article titled In Africa, Cats Are Riding Rhinos

Photo: Bernard Dupont

What’s it doing there? Wildlife ACT speculates that the genet was either using the rhino as a vantage point to spot small game, taking advantage of the insects disturbed by the rhinos feeding or perhaps eating ticks and parasites off its hide.

It appears as if the genets presence startled the rhino, causing it to try to shake the hitchhiker, then flee.

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Genet: What's that buffalo, my noble steed, the savanna's in trouble? Quickly LET'S RIDE!