Meet Extremely Elusive Marbled Cat of China

A video of the most mysterious cats of the world reveals their existence in the Yunnan Province of China. The Gaoligong Mountain National Nature Reserve is the latest to host this endangered marbled cat. The cat roams freely in the hilly forest, trotting down the mountain trail and peeing on the nearby vegetation to mark his territory.

The video shows the beautiful marbled cat, as the housecat-size species is known as, is looking at the camera.  A sense of curiosity interspersed with a fear is clearly visible on its face. The cat is extremely elusive and its footage are rare to find in the annals of forest photography.

Jim Sanderson, program manager at the Texas-based Global Wildlife Conservation, says, “This is not the only video of a marbled cat, but [it’s] still very exciting to see.”

This is the first such footage of this rare cat breed in more than a year. A similar video surfaced last year showing the rare cat in a Malaysian forest.

A small-cat expert,Sanderson has good knowledge about the marbled cat.  In an email to National Geographic he told that just like “many other wild cat species, this individual walks on a trail in the forest,” taking advantage of the ease of travel.

Not much is known about this rare cat species and these cats are hard to spot. Their patchy, uneven population breed inhabit the 2,000-mile stretch from Borneo to Bhutan, according to researchers on these cats. Its discovery in China has become a great news not only for cat lover, but also those working to save similar endangered species.

Physical Characteristics

China classifies the marbled cat as a critically endangered breed.  Less than 10,000 members of the cat family are in existence. However, there is not much information available about their exact location.

The number of the cat species probably lost its glorious days and are in dwindling number thanks to deforestation and emergence of palm oil plantations, shifting cultivation, and seasonal fires in the region, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

He is one of the most active climbers in the feline community. The tabby boasts flexible ankle joints that allow him to easily hang from branches. It also helps him rotate the foot backward without any discomfort.

Black oval spots on legs are typical of the breed, with the back of each ear having a noticeable grey spot in the middle. Another characteristic of the tabby is his very long tail, with blurred rings and short legs.

The marbled cat is arboreal in nature with longest canine teeth. He can ambush his prey from trees and shelters hiskittens in tree hollows.

In March 2016, Live Science reported spotting of this extremely elusive cat in Malaysian Borneo forests.

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