Thursday, September 27, 2007

Geoffroy's Cat

Geoffroy's CatThe commonest wild cat of South America, Geoffroy's cat (also spelled by some as Geoffrey's cat) alongside puma, is one of the most southerly of all cats. Discovered by the nineteenth century French naturalist Geoffroy St Hilaire, it is nearly the size of a domestic cat with length nearing two feet (excluding a one foot tail) and weight around 5-10 lbs. Oncifelis Geoffroyi, it is seen in countries of Brazil, Bolivia, Argentina and Paraguay.

Color and size vary through its range. The northern cats are smaller and have a reddish/yellow base color whereas the cats in south of their range are larger with a grayish fur. Coat is marked by small dark spots that coalesce in upper body, neck and face to form stripes. Undersides and chin are lighter and tail has black bands. Eyes are set low with ears being black at the back with a central white spot.

A solitary, primarily nocturnal cat, the Geoffroy's cat is a versatile hunter and preys on a variety of animals including birds, small mammals, insects and fish. They are good swimmers and agile climbers and are often seen residing in trees, preferring a habitat of underbrush as seen in tropical rain forests.

Attempts at breeding the Geoffroy's cat with domestic felines have been largely unsuccessful. In the wild, gestation lasts nearly two and a half months after which two to three kittens are born that mature at a prodigious rate, being able to stand at four days of age and climb trees at few weeks. Females are the sole parents and take extra care in choosing the birthplace. Totally mobile at six weeks, kittens gain independence at eight months. Owing to the abundance of prey, rapid maturation of kittens and small individual ranges of Geoffroy's cat in the wild, it is believed to be one of the most populous of all wild cats in southern hemisphere - however it is also the most hunted - with nearly 150,000 pelts traded annually. Though not endangered at the moment it may soon be!

49 comments:

Daisy said...

I have never heard of the Geoffrey's Cat before, either. It is very beautiful!

Cheysuli said...

I had not heard of Geoffrey's cat before. I think he's a handsome fellow.

Kathleen Mortensen said...

Thanks for visiting the Poetikat blog. Thought I'd stop by yours and am happy I did. I have 4 cats of my own and I love them!
Did you check out some of my earlier poems? There are a number of cat pieces and pictures.

www.hyggedigter.blogspot.com

Chairman Mao said...

What a purretty cat! I've nefur heard of a Geoffrey's Cat before. I wondur if he's called Jeff fur short? hehehe!

Kittyhugs and purrs from MaoMao!

The Cat Realm said...

Such a beautiful cat! And once again, those ignorant cruel humans hunting it. Every woman wearing fur should be punished! Arrrrr - I just get so mad sometimes....

Marilyn MonREOW said...

What a beautiful kitty, and how horrible that they are hunted so ruthlessly. I had never heard of a Geoffrey's Cat before!

Purrs and snuggles from Marilyn.

Gretchen said...

Looks like a cute, cuddly kitten, but I bet he can be pretty vicious. He's very pretty.

Happy Birthday. I just found you just ahd a birthday. I like your pictures.

Hugs...G

Lux said...

Whoa, Geoffrey's Cat is one good-looking cat! I love the markings ...

THE ZOO said...

whut a beyootiful kitty. but wef nefur hurd of them before effur

Karen Jo said...

I had never heard of the Geoffrey's cat before. They are very beautiful. I think it's horrible that they are hunted for their fur. There's no reason to wear real fur. The synthetics are just as warm and pretty.

NeoAuteur said...

Cool cats! If they are not wild animals, I would love to own one.

Dragonheart said...

Those are very beautiful cats! It is sad that they are hunted so much.

zevo calamari said...

Thanks for the info...we never heard of he Geoffrey's cat before. He is so cute.
Wish your pet human a happy birthdya for us.

Oswegan said...

This is an interesting blog.

Thanks for stopping by and leaving your comment.

As soon as I figure out the whole blog roll thing I will reciprocate by adding you. Maybe you can explain it to me sometime.

~Oswegan

http://oswegan.blogspot.com

ML (Mary Lynn) said...

We never heard of the Geoffrey's Cat either. Very unique. We wish the wearing of fur was restricted only to those who grown their own coats.
Purrs, Missy Blue Eyes and KC

Hot(M)BC said...

Wow, that's a cool cat! Good to meet yoo!
Purrrrrrrs,
Sanjee, Boni Maroni, Mini,Gree and Pepi

Ariel said...

Hi,

Thanks for visiting my blog and adding me.The Geoffrey cat is very beautiful.Thanks for a great post :)

Irishcoda said...

Hi, we stopped in from Blogging Cat Noos to visit! Gee, never heard of Geoffrey's cat before but he sure is pretty!

Mickey said...

Hey.I learned something today.The Geoffery's Cat is very cute. Too bad it is a wild cat.
Thanks for introducing this type of cat

Name: Mr. Hendrix said...

oh wow! mommy just saw one of those last week at the cincinnati zoo when she went with oscar's mommy. wow. they are so cute!

Diamond said...

This looks like a very attractive small cat. What a pity it too is endangered.

Miss Peach>(^,^) said...

Oh will people never learn! 150,000 pelts! How sad for this beautiful creature....thank you for showing us yet another stunning cat in our sad world.
Wishing you happy days and lots of early autumn sunshine:)

Tara said...

Hey Omer, that was very interesting! I also never heard of the Geoffrey's cat before. What a beauty!
Tar

Andrée said...

The ocelot and Geoffrey's cat: two great ones! thanks for the posts and education. Yes, you have been on my blogroll for quite awhile, ever since I "met" you! Thank you for putting me on.

Caesar and Princess said...

Dear Omer, We hope you are doing well in school and thank you for telling us about Geoffrey's cat. he is very very beautiful!

Anonymous said...

So I think I have one of these cats! I dont know
when she was born, but she was rescued on Easter Sunday, 2008. I can take a pic of her with my webcam, email me with an address I can show you the pic! oh and I hear she's about 1yr old? Already having a liter of 4?
Soil0420@hotmail.com
PS Please email me with more info.

Anonymous said...

can these be totally black? I ave a photo that is supposed to be a geoffery's cat but it is totally black, and taken at a wild cat rescue reserve,and they say it is a geffery's cat.

Anonymous said...

I hope they limit the hunting.

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