Standing at only 30 cm tall, meerkats, also known as suricates, have captured the attention of television and film audiences around the world because of their endearing appearance and interesting social behavior. They depend on group cooperation to survive. They live in groups of 20 to 50 extended family members in large underground tunnels. These family groups, called gangs or mobs, are led by an alpha pair, with the female being dominant. Meerkats have a life span of up to ten years.