AboutZoos, Since 2008


Rare glimpse of African golden cat

pub­lished 13 Novem­ber 2013 | mod­i­fied 03 Novem­ber 2014

The Wildlife Con­ser­va­tion Soci­ety (WCS) and Pan­thera released cam­era trap footage today from Uganda’s Kibale National Park show­ing a rarely seen African golden cat (Cara­cal aurata).

African golden catThe cat was recorded scent-​marking after it was attracted to a cam­era site “baited” with Calvin Klein Obses­sion for Men, which is fre­quently used by WCS sci­en­tists to attract cats and other wildlife to remote cameras.

WCS is sup­port­ing a study of these poorly known forest-​dependent cats to bet­ter under­stand their con­ser­va­tion needs and how they may be affected by over­hunt­ing and deforestation.

The first known wild footage of a golden cat was taken in 2011 by Pan­thera sci­en­tists in Gabon:

One sur­pris­ing find­ing of this ongo­ing research is that these cats are not strictly noc­tur­nal as pre­vi­ously thought, but “cath­e­meral” — active both night and day. Nev­er­the­less, most sci­en­tists work­ing in Africa’s rain forests have never seen a live spec­i­men in the wild.

African golden cats live in trop­i­cal forests in West, Cen­tral, and East Africa. They can weigh up to 35 pounds (16 kilo­grams) and feed on birds, rodents, mon­keys, and other mam­mals. It is listed as Near Threat­ened by the IUCN Red List of Threat­ened Species.

(Source: WCS press release, 12.11.2013; Pan­thera press release, 08.09.2011)

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