Link between humans and meerkats

Last updated at 06:42

We've all heard them speaking on the TV adverts, but it seems meerkats may be more like humans than you'd think.

Scientists have discovered that the animals can identifying each other by voice alone.

They're thought to be the first species to be able to do this, other than primates, like monkeys.

Researchers recorded a range of meerkat vocal sounds and played them to wild meerkats in South Africa, to see how they reacted to different voices.

Meerkats rely heavily on vocal communication to co-ordinate activities and keep track of any changes in their environment.

They live in clans of up to 30 and work as a team to protect the family from predators.