The caracal occupies a diverse range of habitats, including semi-deserts, open savannas, scrublands, moist woodlands, thickets, evergreen forests, and montane forests. However, it prefers drier woodlands and savannas with lower rainfall and some vegetation for cover.
Male caracals have a head and body length of 75 to 105.7 cm, a tail length of 23.1 to 34 cm, and weigh between 8 and 20 kg. Females are smaller, measuring 69 to 102.9 cm in head and body length, with a tail length of 19.5 to 34 cm. Their weight ranges from 7 to 15.9 kg.