The black footed cat iz the smallest African wild cat... and the most adorable! (Gallery)
These wild cats will melt your heart!
The black footed cat iz the smallest African wild cat, where the adults weigh in as little as 3lbs or less!
"This secretive and rare cat is among the smallest of the world’s cats, and is the smallest wild cat in Africa The coat of the black-footed cat (Felis nigripes) varies from cinnamon buff to tawny, and is patterned with black or brown oblong spots, offering effective camouflage," via Arkive.
"Black-footed cats are nocturnal inhabitants of the arid lands of southern Africa, and are typically associated with open, sandy grassy habitats with sparse scrub and tree cover. Although poorly studied in the wild, optimal habitat seems to be savannah areas having long grass with high rodent and bird densities. During the day, they live in abandoned burrows dug or in holes in termite mounds," Big Cat Rescue wrote.
"In nature, their diet consists mainly of small mammals and birds, insects, arachnids, and reptiles. In captivity many cats are fed commercial feline diets and mice, and further investigation into their nutritional requirements is warranted. They hunt by a stalk, run and pounce method, or they wait outside of rodent holes for their prey. They can travel up to 5 miles a night while hunting."
Sadly, there status iz vulnerable in the wild. Because of their small nature, they iz not a threat to livestock so farmers do not persecute them. But, traps set for other predators and the poisoning of carcasses to control jackals and locust could get to the black footed cats that might scavenge.
Luckily, there iz efforts to keep these cats alive and well.
"The black-footed cat is listed on Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) and therefore international trade in this species is prohibited. Hunting of this species is also prohibited in Botswana and South Africa. The black-footed cat is also bred at a number of zoos worldwide," via Arkive.
More research iz needed for these beautiful cats, but there iz many organizations out there doing their best to keep them healthy and living.
Watch the video below!
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