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Cats Are Going Extinct: 12 Most Endangered Feline Species

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Andean Cat

We go from the huge tiger to the tiny wild cat that looks like it could be a house cat! This is the Andean Cat, and before 1998, the only evidence scientists had that it existed at all was two photographs. This small mountain cat is so similar in habitat and appearance — preferring high altitudes and its body shape and coloring — that it is considered the tiny version of the snow leopard. But unlike the snow leopard, there is far less conservation funding to help this cat. The Andean Cat Alliance and the Small Cat Conservation Alliance are the two groups mainly helping this felid species. Fewer than 2,500 are thought to exist today, with a declining population due to a loss of habitat and prey, and due to hunting for traditional ceremonial purposes.

 

Clouded Leopard

The Clouded Leopard has been in the news recently because it has been declared extinct in its native Taiwan. After over a decade of searching, researchers couldn’t find a shred of evidence that the cat still lives in the country. Thankfully, the species still exists in other areas of Southeast Asia, though total numbers are estimated to be less than 10,000. Because of this, they have been listed as vulnerable to extinction (not endangered, but close to it), since 2008. The main threats against them, of course, are human-made — habitat loss from large–scale deforestation, and commercial poaching for the wildlife trade.


African Lion

You wouldn’t think the king of the jungle would be in danger of disappearing but indeed, even this most iconic animal, the African Lion, is listed as vulnerable to extinction. Thankfully, it is not yet endangered but it is rapidly approaching that status. Because of habitat loss and conflict with humans, most lions are now found in eastern and southern Africa, with their numbers in serious decline. Between 30-50% of lions have been lost in the last two decades alone, and there are now only around 47,000 (at the very highest estimates) still living in the wild. Conservation groups are working to not only preserve habitat so that lions have enough room to hunt and roam, but also to provide people with tools and knowledge for how to coexist with these big cats and reduce the number of deaths due to snaring. Hopefully we can keep this cat from making it onto the endangered species list.

 

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

Photo Credit: Jim Sanderson

Photo Credit: Martin Pettitt

 

Also Check Out: Amazing Dogs Working to Save Endangered Species

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FromTreehugger, By Jaymi Heimbuch

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Planet Green is the multi-platform media destination devoted to the environment and dedicated to helping people understand how humans impact the planet and how to live a more environmentally sustainable lifestyle. Its two robust websites, planetgreen.com and TreeHugger.com, offer original, inspiring, and entertaining content related to how we can evolve to live a better, brighter future. Planet Green is a division of Discovery Communications.

179 comments

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5:06AM PST on Nov 11, 2014

beautiful and magnificient animals

5:25PM PST on Nov 10, 2014

I support Snow Leopard Conservancy and Snow Leopard Trust- they encourage local herders to protect their sheep by using predator proof corrals, (so as not to tempt the snow leopards), and to not poach the wild prey of the snow leopards.

5:24AM PDT on Sep 13, 2014

The human should take this warning of their devastating the environment or they'll soon fall victim to what they've been doing

3:57AM PDT on Sep 13, 2014

Cats in any breed, size, colour or shape are magnificent and mysterious animals. I couldn't imagine a world without these fabulous creatures.

3:58AM PDT on Jul 16, 2013

thank you for sharing 16/7,

10:39AM PDT on Jul 9, 2013

a tragedy, big cats/wild cats are magnificent

11:30AM PDT on Jun 24, 2013

thanks for sharing :)

6:12PM PDT on Jun 23, 2013

What a great list of some cats I have never heard of. Sounds like the greatest action we can take to help them is to STOP eating PALM. There is no sustainably grown palm, even palm oil listed as organic. Funny, palm was used so little until everyone freaked out about transfats. Now palm is everywhere, even in 'natural', 'organic' (and not so) peanut butter. Shame.

8:47AM PDT on Jun 5, 2013

Tragic!

9:50AM PDT on Jun 1, 2013

THANK YOU FOR SHARING

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people are talking

Thank you for sharing, one crazy doggie...

A wonderful & beautiful ending for all, the joy on the dogs face is amazing.

I'll read them later.

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