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Rarest of Cats Caught on Video

One of the world’s least-known African wild cats, the African golden cat (Caracal aurata) was caught on video recently with a remotely placed motion-activated camera. They are nocturnal and shy so not much research has been done about their behavior, compared with other wild cats. Rainforest is their preferred habitat, and they are good tree climbers; they mainly eat rodents and squirrels. Reportedly no litters have ever been observed in the wild. There may be as many as 10,000.

The recently captured video resulted from the efforts of a graduate student from Gabon. It was recorded in an area where logging is also taking place. Logging is destroying large swaths of natural habitat for many animals so the student is trying to collect information about its impact on wildlife. This work is important because large industries often don’t have any idea about the lives of wild animals living in forests, because they see the trees as nothing more than a resource to extract.

Conservationists are dismissed too quickly as obstructing economic progress, but healthy ecosystems typically contribute far more value to humans and the planet than any profit-driven endeavors. Many forests are logged in an unsustainable manner for quick cash, with the damaged or destroyed ecosystems left for others to restore, if it is even possible.

This particular cat is dependent upon forest cover for survival. Its’ population has been declining due to deforestation and hunting. Currently it has a conservation status of near threatened.

Image Credit: Philipp Henschel/Panthera



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11:14AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

OMG, I hope humans look but don't do any harm to this rare animal. Thanks for the picture.

9:03PM PDT on Apr 24, 2012

It's not that the so-called 'large industries often don’t have any idea about the lives of wild animals living in forests', its just that they don't give a shit about them.
Ok fine. They may not know then. Now that you've taken your time to tell them about this desturction, did they cease and desist immediate operation? No right? That just proved my case. Even if they do know now, they would still continue doing what they had been all along every where in the world since the first bean sprout appeared. They're profit driven. They wouldn't stop for no wild animals. Let their actions be a testimony against them when judgement day comes.
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5:20PM PDT on Apr 24, 2012


5:19PM PDT on Apr 24, 2012


4:10PM PDT on Apr 24, 2012


11:38AM PDT on Mar 12, 2012

fantastic news

5:26AM PDT on Oct 9, 2011


6:33PM PDT on Sep 15, 2011

Beautiful cat. I hope they can survive man's distruction of the trees and our planet.

2:04PM PDT on Sep 10, 2011

I agree 100% with Pat G. :)

12:43AM PDT on Sep 10, 2011

Why can't they at least reseed so new trees will grow!!!

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