Guest Videos: On This Date–Newton’s Principia!


On July 5, 1687, Isaac Newton published Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica.

The date he invented the cat flap is not known, so let’s include that in today’s celebration.

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Species Facts: The Andes Mountain Cat

 

Not many facts about the Andean mountain cat are available.  It’s presently known to science as Leopardus jacobita.

This little feline resident of the Andes is so good at avoiding people that, even in 1998, only two sightings had been reported. (Johnson and others)

By the end of the twentieth century, all scientists had to prove that this cat wasn’t a figment of their imagination were three skulls and less than forty museum specimens, each one at least sixty years old. (Johnson and others)

By 2002, things hadn’t changed much. Experts reported that the only proof of the Andean mountain cat’s existence was the occasional pelt appearing in local fur markets. (Sunquist and Sunquist)

Now, with the help of technology, the Internet, and many devoted scientists willing to do what it takes to get up into the mountain cat’s home ground, this has happened!


Only one question remains: What did they put in that bait?


Featured image: Jim Sanderson. CC BY-SA 3.0.


Sources:
Johnson, W. E.; Culver, M.; Iriarte, J.A.; Eizirik, E.; and others. 1998. Tracking the evolution of the elusive Andean mountain cat (Oreailurus jacobita) from mitochondrial DNA. The Journal of Heredity. 89(3): 227-232.

Sunquist, M. and Sunquist, F. 2002. Wild cats of the world. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press.

Welcome!

Starting tomorrow, I will be posting at least one fact a day here about house cats, fancy cats, the big cats, all those other wild cats, and/or the awesome sabertoothed cats.

This is in aid of a series of 50 Facts About Cats ebooks that I will self-publish this fall as a retirement project.

By liking or commenting on a post, you can help me decide which facts should go into each book.  Or you can just sit back and enjoy some insights into one of the most amazing and popular animal groups on this planet – the cat family Felidae.
IMAGE:  Featured image is by Harrison Weir in Our Cats and All About Them, 1889.