Mystery Civet of Madagascar.

Etymology: Malagasy (Austronesian) word.

Variant names: Vontira, Votsotsoke.

Physical description: Size of a cat. Broad face. Large ears.

Behavior: Kills rats and snakes by sticking its tail down their burrows and farting.

Distribution: Southwestern Madagascar.

Possible explanation: The Narrow-striped mongoose (Mungotictus decemlineata) holds its bushy tail erect when alarmed.

Source: David A. Burney and Ramilisonina, "The Kilopilopitsojy, Kidoky, and Bokyboky: Accounts of Strange Animals from Belo-sur-Mer, Madagascar, and the Megafaunal 'Extinction Window,'" American Anthropologist 100 (1998): 957-966.

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