Cats & the Feline Family
Domestic cat (Felis catus)
When we taking about cats & the feline family the cat scientifically named as Felis catus is a carnivorous mammal. Cats are belonging to family Felidae, And it is the only domesticated species of this family. Commonly this species called as domestic cats. A cat can either be a house cat, or a feral cat the latter ranges freely and avoids human contact. Domestic cats are valued by humans for companionship and their ability to hunt rodents.
The anatomy of a cat is similar to the other wild species. They have strong and flexible body, quick reflexes, sharp teeth and retractable claws adapted to kill prays. Cats have well developed night vison and sense of smell. A predator that is most active at dawn and dusk, the cat is a solitary hunter but also a social species. It can hear sounds too faint or too high in frequency for human ears, such as those made by mice and other small mammals. It secretes and perceives pheromones.
Female domestic cats can have kittens from the spring to late autumn time period. Commonly a female cat give birth from two to five kittens at once. Cats firstly domesticated in the Near East around 7500 BC. It was long thought that cat domestication was initiated in ancient Egypt. As since around 3100 BC veneration was given to cats in ancient Egypt. As of 2021 there are an estimated 220 million owned and 480 million stray cats in the world.
Lion (Panthera leo)
When taking about cats & the feline family the Lion scientifically name as Panthera leo is a large powerful built cat belongs to family Felidae. Lions are second in size for only the tiger. From the ancient times lions are consider as the “king of beasts”. Normally lions are most active at night and live in a variety of habitats. But they mostly prefer grassland, savanna, dense scrub and open woodland.
The distribution of the lions range across much of Europe, Asia and Africa, but now they are found mainly in parts of Africa south of the Sahara.
Lion has a muscular, deep chested body, short rounded head, round ears, and a hairy tuft at the end of its tail. It is sexually dimorphic as adult male lions have a prominent mane. Lions are consider as a social species. They foam groups called prides. A lion pride consists of a few adult males, related males and cubs. Usually female lions hunt together and praying mostly on large ungulates.
Tiger (Panthera tigris)
Tiger, (Panthera tigris) largest member of the cat family(Felidae), contender only by the lion in strength and ferocity. It is most recognizable for dark vertical stripes on orange- brown fur with a lighter underside. Tiger is an apex predator and they primarily praying on ungulates (such as deer and wild boar).
The tiger is considere as an endangered species throughout its range, which stretches from the Russian Far East through parts of North Korea, China, India, and Southeast Asia to the Indonesian island of Sumatra. The Siberian or Amur, tiger (P. tigris altaica) is the largest member. It measuring up to 4 metres (13 feet) in total length and weighing up to 300 kg (660 pounds). The Indian, or Bengal, tiger (P. tigris tigris) accounts about half of the total tiger population.
Male tigers are larger than female and may attain a shoulder height of about 1 meter and a length of about 2.2 metres, excluding a tail of about 1 meter; weight is 160–230 kg (350–500 pounds), and tigers from the south are smaller than those of the north.
Leopard (Panthera pardus)
Leopard, (Panthera pardus), also called panther. This large cat closely closely related to lion, tiger and jaguar.It is one of the five extant species in genus Panthera. Can found in a wide range of sub Saharan Africa, in some parts of Western and Central Asia, Southern Russia and on the Indian sub-continent to Southeast and Est Asia. The leopard varies greatly in size and markings.
The average size is 50 to 90 kg (110 to 200 pounds) in weight, 210 cm (84 inches), excluding the 90-cm tail, in length, and 60 to 70 cm in shoulder height. Compare to other wild cats, it is consider as leopards has short legs and long body with larger skull. Appearance is somewhat similar t the jaguar. The ground colour is typically yellowish above and white below. Dark spots are generally arrange in rosettes over much of the body and are without the central spot characteristic of the coat of the jaguar. The ground color within the rosettes is sometimes a darker yellow, and the size and spacing of the spots vary greatly. As a result of these differences in pattern of dark spots, several races of leopard have named.
The leopards are lives alone of the bush and forest and is mainly nocturnal in habit. It rarely basks in the sun. leopard is an agile climber and frequently stores the remains of its kills in the branches of a tree. cat feeds upon any animals such as small rodents to water buck.But generally preys on the smaller and medium-sized antelopes and deer. leopards sometimes takes livestock and may attack human beings. It is listed as vulnerable on IUCN red list.
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)
Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) is the one of cat we must talk about When we taking about cats & the feline family . One of the world’s most-recognizable cats. They specially known for their speed. Native to Africa and central Iran. Nearly all the cheetahs remaining in the wild live in Africa. Cheetahs’ sprints have measured at a maximum of 114 km (71 miles) per hour. And they routinely reach velocities of 80–100 km per hour while pursuing prey. The fur coat is creamy white or pale yellow covered with black spots.
Their faces are distinguish by prominent black lines that curve from the inner corner of each eye to the outer corners of the mouth, like a well-worn trail of inky tears. Cheetahs have a long, slender body measuring 1.2 meters (4 feet), with a long tail (65–85 cm [2–3 feet]) that generally ends in a white tuft. They are about 75 cm tall at the shoulder. Weight ranges from 34 to 54 kg (75 to 119 pounds), males being slightly larger than females. Four subspecies are recognize. Cheetah has categorized in to vulnerable category in IUCN red list.
Jaguar (Panthera onca)
Jaguars are consider as the only big cat found in America. It is the third biggest members of the cat family after tigers and lions. Their appearance is mostly similar to the leopards which live in Africa and Asia. The difference is jaguar’s spots are more complex and often have dot in the center. The body length is up to 1.85m (6 ft 1 in).
In many ancient South American cultures jaguars ere worshiped as gods. They also saw up in the art and archeology of pre Colombian cultures. with the Colombian culture puma is the one must talk considering the cats & the feline family.
Jaguars are mostly depending on prays such as deer, peccaries, capybaras and tapirs. They are quite good swimmers and they do not avoid water unlike other cats. So they hunt fish, turtles and even caimans using their powerful jaws.
Jaguars are territorial animals and live alone. The territory is mark by their waste or clawing trees. Jaguars are classified as near-threatened by IUCN.
Wildcat (Felis silvestris)
Considering the cats & the feline family the wild cat Felis silvestris belongs wild cat is a small member of the cat family. Wild cats are native to Eurasia and Africa. There are some three to five subspecies. The name wildcat is also use as a general term for feral domestic cats. And for any of the smaller wild species of the cat family.
The subspecies European wild cat (felis silvestris silvestris), inhabits forested regions form Scotland through continental Europe to western Asia. Its appearance is similar to the domestic cat. But they have longer legs than domestic cats, a larger flattered head, and a full relatively short tail ending in a round tip.
The sub species of African wild cat ( felis silvestris lybica) inhabits to northern Africa. Wild cats considered as putative ancestor of the domestic cat. The Asian wild cat (felis silvestris ornata) distributed in east of the Caspian Sea in to China.
Puma (Puma concolor) the mountain lion
Puma (Puma concolor), also called mountain lion, cougar, panther (eastern U.S.), or catamount. It is a large brownish New World cat native to America comparable in size to the jaguar and the only other large cat of the Western Hemisphere. It is an adaptable, generalist species. The Puma has the widest distribution of any mammal, with a range extending from southeastern Alaska to Argentina and Chile. Pumas live in a variety of habitats, including desert scrub, chaparral, swamps, and forests, but they avoid agricultural areas, flatlands, and other habitats lacking cover (vegetative or topographic). Six subspecies of the Puma concolor are recognize by most classifications.
Domestic cat (Felis catus) When we taking about cats & the feline family the cat scientifically named as Felis catus is a carnivorous mammal. Cats are belonging to family Felidae, And it is the only domesticated species of this family. Commonly this species called as domestic cats. A cat can either be a house cat, or a feral cat the…