World’s smallest wild cat born in UK sanctuary
This article originally featured in The Skylark’s newsletter and was written as a condensed news in brief.
The rusty-spotted wild cat is the world’s smallest species of wild cat at a mere 13 to 19 inches long. Like most wild cats, they are under threat due to habitat loss in their native homes of India, Sri Lanka and Nepal. Currently listed as near threatened on the IUCN Red List, there are only approximately 40 in captivity.
In 2019, the Porfell Wildlife Sanctuary in Lanreath was offered the opportunity to home and care for two cats which later went on to have kittens. The sanctuary took part in the Rusty Spotted Cat Conservation Breeding Programme, which helped ensure the threatened cats were born alive and healthy.
This is a new challenge for the sanctuary which mostly cares for older, abandoned animals. Due to the current UK wide lockdown, the park is facing an uncertain financial future with the lack of visitors and have therefore set up a GoFundMe page for anyone interested in supporting their animal care.