Animals & Wildlife Magazine

Felidae (Cats)

By Garry Rogers @Garry_Rogers

Felidae (Cats)The Wildlife Blog:  “Felidae recognize 18 genera and 36 species. With the exception of the largest cats, most are adept climbers, and many are skilled swimmers. Most felids are solitary. Often, felids are separated into two distinct subgroups, large cats and small cats. Generally, small cats are those that, due to a hardening of the hyoid bone, have an inability to roar. Felidae consists of 2 subfamilies, Pantherinae (e.g., lions and tigers) and Felinae (e.g., bobcats, pumas, and cheetahs). With the exception of Antarctica, Australia, New Zealand, Madagascar, Japan, and most oceanic islands, native populations of cats are found worldwide, and one species, domestic cats, have been introduced nearly everywhere humans currently exist.

“Cats are found in all terrestrial habitats except treeless tundra and polar ice regions. Most species are habitat generalists and can be found in a wide range of environments. However, few have adapted to a limited range of habitats. For example, optimal habitat for sand cats (Felis margarita) consists of sandy and stony deserts. Domestic and feral cats (F. catus) are ubiquitous globally and are especially pervasive in urban and suburban areas.”

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