The meerkat or suricate, Suricata suricatta, is a small mammal belonging to the mongoose family. Meerkats live throughout the Kalahari desert in Botswana, much of the Namib desert in Namibia and southwestern Angola, and in South Africa. A group of meerkats is called "mafia", "gang" or "clan". A meerkat clan often contains around 20 meerkats, but some superfamilies have 50 or more members. In captivity, meerkats have a half-life of 12 to 14 years, and about half in the wild.