The Indian Gray Mongoose or Common Grey Mongoose (Herpestes edwardsii) is predominantly found in Sri Lanka and southern India.
It is common to find them around human habitation but they are generally shy and will keep out of sight, hiding in tall grass and bushes.
It has speckled gray fur and a reddish tint to their heads. It has a long, bushy tail that it carries behind it, whose length equals their body length.
It has a varied diet consisting of rats, mice, other rodents, small birds, bird's eggs, invertebrates and lizards. They are also known to kill snakes including cobras, a feat which requires a great deal of speed and agility and protective nature of their thick coat.
However, this species is also known to end up as food for snakes. Leopards are another known predator of this animal.
It is a skillful hunter that actively searches for prey by using its strong senses of smell and sight. It sniffs the ground and turns over rocks and stones in its search for prey. It eats anything it can catch.
They do not have a specific mating season and breeds all year long with a gestation period of approximately 60 to 65 days. Males and females are solitary except during the mating season. After mating, each pair separates, and the male often mates with other females.
It is the most common species of mongoose in India and is listed to be of least concern.