Marbled Cat Facts
- The Marbled Cat is an extremely reclusive species of small wild cat endemic to a severely restricted range.
- The IUCN lists this truly amazing rare mammal officially as Vulnerable, pending further evaluation of its numbers.
- In fact, evidence indicates that fewer than ten thousand individuals may remain surviving, presenting fears of extinction.
- The primary threat to the existence of the species currently consists of deforestation of its native habitat.
Marbled Cat Physical Description
Firstly, the remarkable Marbled Cat remains of similar size to most domestic house cats, with a much bushier tail which may sometimes be longer than the body.
Also, individuals average between 18-24 in (45-62 cm) in head-to-tail body length, with the tail averaging about 14-22 in (35-55 cm) in length.
Weights vary between 2 and 5 kg (4.4 and 11.0 lb).
The coat grows rather thick and soft and varies in background color from dark grey-brown through yellowish gray to red-brown.
Spots on the forehead and crown merge into narrow longitudinal stripes on the neck and irregular stripes on the back. The back and flanks have with dark, irregular dark-edged blotches.
Further, the legs and underparts have black dots, and the tail is marked with black spots and rings.
In addition to its long tail, the marbled cat has really large feet. It also possesses unusually large canine teeth, resembling those of the big cats. These appear to be the result of parallel evolution.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Mammalia
- Order: Carnivora
- Family: Felidae
- Genus: Pardofelis
- Species: P. marmorata
Marbled Cat Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
The highly reclusive Marbled Cat inhabits an extremely limited range of Southeast Asia. This includes portions of the Himalayan foothills, Nepal, southwest China, and also the islands of Borneo and Sumatra.
Due to the reclusive nature of the Marbled Cat, we know little about this species. However, we do know a few facts concerning the elusive creature.
It primarily chooses to inhabit regions of relatively dense tropical forest, unless forced to adapt to other regions.
The Marbled Cat has also evolved to be primarily arboreal in nature.
When standing or resting, marbled cats assume a characteristic position with their backs arched.
The animal also now represents a protected species in most of the regions it inhabits but is often trapped accidentally by random trapping for other, unprotected species in the same areas.