The African Wild Cat appears to be a domestic cat to many of our visitors. But what they do not know is that it is an extremely endangered species – surprisingly not due to poaching or loss of habitat, but instead due to interbreeding with domestic cats.

Domestic cats are originated from the wild cat but now, these domestic species are breeding with the wildcats, therefore, their species is slowly dwindling. The true African Wild Cat is extremely rare so when they are seen, it is a truly special sighting.

These small cats (although larger than the average domestic cat) are solitary animals unless they are mating or raising young. They weigh from about 3 to 6.5 kgs and eat mainly small rodents or birds.

Their mating season is generally from January to about June and young are born during the summer months (September to March) with a gestation of more or less 65 days and the average litter being 2 to 5 kittens. As with all wild cats, the young are extremely vulnerable but if they survive these unsafe months, they could live up to 15 years.

The coats of the wild cat depend on their environment in order to blend in to the appropriate surroundings.

So when you make a turn to Kapama, keep a lookout for this rare little cat – it is more special than it seems.

KC – Kapama River Lodge

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