African wild cat

Total length 85 - 100 cm; tail 25 - 37 cm; shoulder height 35 cm; mass 2.5 - 6.0 kg
Similar in appearance to domestic cat but larger with proportionately longer legs. Colour ranges from pale sandy brown in drier areas to light or dark grey in wetter parts of the subregion. Body marked with more or less distinct dark vertical stripes. Relatively long tail dark-ringed with black tip. Chin and throat white and chest usually paler than rest of body. Belly usually reddish. Back of each ear coloured rich reddish-brown. Interbreeds readily with domestic cats and hybrids can cause confusion.
Wide habitat tolerance but requires cover.

Solitary except when mating or when female is tending kittens. Droppings usually buried in the same way as domestic cat but they also establish small 'latrines' where droppings accumulate.

Mainly small rodents but they also eat other small mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, insects and other invertebrates. The largest recorded prey items are hares, springhares and birds up to the size of guinea-fowl.

The african wildcat is considered an endangered species because of interbreeding with domestic cats.

Interesting links

(en) African wildcat
(sc) Felis silvestris lybica
(nl) Afrikaanse wilde kat
(af) Vaalboskat