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The Rusty-Spotted Cat Is The Smallest Wild Cat In The World

The rusty-spotted cat (Prionailurus rubiginosus) is one of the smallest wild cat species in the world – 14 to 19 inches in length, with a 5.9 to 12 inch tail, and weighs between 2 to 3.5 lbs. The cat is found only in India and Sri Lanka, mostly in forested areas but also scrub and grasslands. It is estimated that there are less than 10,000 mature cats in the wild.

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    Rusty-spotted cats have short and soft fur. Their coat is grey with small rusty-brown spots on the flanks, back and head area.

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    Via Bashoh

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    The cat’s face has two dark streaks on each cheek along with stripes that extend from the eyes to the shoulders.

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    The rusty-spotted cat’s tail has dark rings and its underside is white with more large spots.

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    Via Bashoh

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    Rusty-spotted cats are known for their agility and are considered skilled tree climbers.

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    They generally spend the day sleeping in hollow logs or areas where there is dense foliage.

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    It is believed that they hunt on the ground during the evening.

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    Their prey consists mostly of small mammals, usually rodents, and birds. However the cat has also been known to feed on insects, frogs and lizards.


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    Researchers believe that when the cat is threatened, it will climb and hide in trees.

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    Female rusty-spotted cats will typically give birth to between one and two kittens, usually in a shallow, secluded cave.

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    At birth, the kittens weigh just 60 to 77 g (2.1 to 2.7 oz), and are marked with rows of black spots. They reach sexual maturity at around 68 weeks, by which time they have developed the distinctive adult coat pattern of rusty blotches.

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    It is not known how long the rusty-spotted cat lives in the wild. In captivity, the cat has lived as long as 12 years.

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    Via Bashoh

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    Watch the adorable rusty cat in action:

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    Via BBC
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