Category: Big cat lineage

Big cat lineage species fact the cat family wild cats

Species fact: Clouded leopards

Clouded leopards are adorable.
The “clouds” are those beautiful dark blotches on the coat.

These wild felines aren’t close relatives of the leopard, but modern research shows that clouded leopards do belong with the big cats. Their head and face are a little weird looking. That could be because these Southeast Asian cats are primitive – the first big cats to evolve some 11 million years ago. But some paleontologists have a different explanation for it.

Big cat lineage species fact the cat family wild cats

Species Facts: The Leopard

The world’s most famous spotted cat is a little better off than other big cats. Although its range has shrunk, the leopard still calls two continents home. Since leopards can adapt to almost any environment from sea level up to around 17,000 feet in the Himalayas, you will find them in most of sub-Saharan Africa and across much of southern/northeast Asia. While the overall species isn’t endangered, some leopard subspecies are. But in India the high numbers of both leopards and people are causing serious problems.

Big cat lineage big cats the cat family wild cats

Two Big-Cat Attacks

The fact that cats are dangerous seems pretty self-evident.

Yet, last summer, visitors to a drive-through zoo still got out of their car near an uncaged tiger, with predictable results. 

This summer, a Kenyan man illegally grazed his herd in Nairobi National Park at night – prime lion activity time. They found what little was left of him the next morning.

Seen more closely, though, these incidents aren’t as simple as they seem.

For one thing, each happened in a big city – Beijing and Nairobi, respectively.