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Common Names in Dutch:
Common Names in English:
African black-footed cat, black-footed cat, Small-spotted cat
Common Names in French:
Chat ? Pieds Noirs, Chat à pieds noirs
Common Names in Russian:
Common Names in Spanish:
Gato de pies negros, Gato patinegro
Biome: Terrestrial .
The black-footed cat is a specialist
of open, short grass
of small rodents and ground-roosting birds. It inhabits
dry, open savanna
, grasslands and Karoo semi-desert with sparse shrub
and a mean annual
rainfall of between 100 and 500
mm at altitudes
of 0-2,000 m.
It is not found in the driest and sandiest
parts of the Namib and Kalahari Deserts (Sliwa 2008).
During a 6-year field study on the game farm in central South Africa, 1725 prey items were observed consumed by 17 free-ranging habituated black-footed cats. Average prey size was 24.1 g. Eight males fed on significantly larger prey (27.9 g) than 9 females (20.8 g). Fifty-four prey species were classified by their average mass into 8 different size classes, 3 for mammals, 3 for birds, 1 for amphibians/reptiles, and 1 for invertebrates . Small mammals (5-40 g) constituted the most important prey class (39%) of total prey biomass followed by larger mammals (> 100 g; 17%) and small birds ( 100 g) were mainly consumed. Small rodents like the large-eared mouse (Malacothrix typica), captured 595 times by both sexes, were particularly important during the reproductive season for females with kittens. Male black-footed cats showed less variation between prey size classes consumed among climatic seasons. This sex-specific difference in prey size consumption may help to reduce intra-specific competition (Sliwa 2006). In terms of interspecific competition, Sliwa et al. (2007) found that black-footed cats captured smaller prey on average than African wildcats, although both captured approximately the same number (12-13) of prey species per night.
Black-footed cats are solitary, except for females with dependent kittens, and during mating. Males have larger annual home ranges (20.7 km²; n=5) than females (10.0 km², n=7) (Sliwa 2004). Adults travel an average of 8.42+/- 2.09 km per night - more distance than the African wildcat (5.1 +/- 3.35 km per night) depite their smaller size, although some wildcats travelled very far (17.37 per km longest distance, as opposed to the black-footed at's 14.61 km) (Sliwa et al. 2007).
Male ranges overlap those of 1-4 females. Intra-sexual overlap varies from 12.9% for three males to 40.4% for five females. Home-range size is likely to vary between regions according to resources available to the individuals (Sliwa 2004). Kittens are independent after 3-4 months, but remain within the range of their mother for extended periods (Sliwa 2008).
The black-footed cat is one of the world's smallest cats, with females weighing an average of 1.3 kg and males larger at 1.93 kg (Sliwa 2008). The conspecific and more common African wildcat is considerably larger (females - 3.9 kg; males - 5.1 kg) (Sliwa et al. 2007)..
List of Habitats :
- 2 Savanna
- 2.1 Savanna - Dry
- 4 Grassland
- 4.5 Grassland - Subtropical/Tropical Dry
- 8 Desert
- 8.1 Desert - Hot [more info]
- Whittaker & Margulis,1978
- C. Linnaeus, 1758
- (Hatschek, 1888) Cavalier-Smith, 1983
- Grobben, 1908
- (Haeckel, 1874) Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Bateson, 1885
- Cuvier, 1812
- Jawed Vertebrates
- Goodrich, 1930
- C. Linnaeus, 1758
- (Rowe, 1988) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- (Wible et al., 1995) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- McKenna, 1975
- McKenna, 1975
- McKenna, 1975
- (McKenna, 1975) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- (Parker & Haswell, 1897) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- (Owen, 1837) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- (Mckenna, 1975) M.c. Mckenna & S.k. Bell, 1997
- (McKenna, 1975) McKenna, in Stucky & McKenna, in Benton, ed., 1993
- Grandorder: Ferae () - (Linnaeus, 1758) McKenna, 1975
- Superorder: Preptotheria () - (McKenna, 1975) McKenna, in Stucky & McKenna, in Benton, ed., 1993
- Magnorder: Epitheria () - (Mckenna, 1975) M.c. Mckenna & S.k. Bell, 1997
- Cohort: Placentalia () - (Owen, 1837) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Supercohort: Theria () - (Parker & Haswell, 1897) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Infralegion: Tribosphenida () - (McKenna, 1975) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Sublegion: Zatheria () - McKenna, 1975
- Legion: Cladotheria () - McKenna, 1975
- Superlegion: Trechnotheria () - McKenna, 1975
- Infraclass: Holotheria () - (Wible et al., 1995) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Subclass: Theriiformes () - (Rowe, 1988) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Class: Mammalia () - C. Linnaeus, 1758
- Superclass: Tetrapoda () - Goodrich, 1930
- Infraphylum: Gnathostomata () - auct. - Jawed Vertebrates
- Subphylum: Vertebrata () - Cuvier, 1812 - Vertebrates
- Phylum: Chordata () - Bateson, 1885 - Chordates
- Infrakingdom: Chordonia () - (Haeckel, 1874) Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Branch: Deuterostomia () - Grobben, 1908
- Subkingdom: Bilateria () - (Hatschek, 1888) Cavalier-Smith, 1983
- Kingdom: Animalia () - C. Linnaeus, 1758 - animals
Members of the genus Felis
ZipcodeZoo has pages for 38 species and subspecies in this genus:
F. badia (Bay Cat) · F. bengalensis hainana (Leopard Cat) · F. bieti (Chinese Mountain Cat) · F. catus (Cat) · F. catus silvestris (African Wild Cat) · F. chaus (Andean Cougar) · F. colocolo (Pampas Cat) · F. concolor (Goldon Ringtail Possum) · F. concolor concolor (Mountain Lion) · F. concolor coryi (Florida Panther) · F. concolor couguar (Eastern Cougar) · F. concolor schorgeri (Wisconsin Cougar) · F. geoffroyi geoffroyi (Geoffroy's Cat) · F. guigna (Kodkod) · F. guigna guigna (Kodkod) · F. iriomotensis (Band-Tailed Goatfish) · F. libyca (African Wild Cat) · F. manul (Pallas's Cat) · F. margarita (Pakistan Sand Cat) · F. margarita margarita (Sand Dune Cat) · F. nigripes (African Black-Footed Cat) · F. nigripes nigripes (African Black-Footed Cat) · F. pardalis (Ocelot) · F. pardina (Spanish Lynx) · F. pardus (Small Cats) · F. planiceps (Flat-Headed Cat) · F. rubiginosa (Vogelkop Ringtail) · F. serval serval (Serval) · F. silvestris (Andean Cougar) · F. silvestris bieti (Chinese Desert Cat) · F. silvestris catus (African Wild Cat) · F. silvestris grampia (Scottish Wildcat) · F. sylvestris (Wild Cat) · F. temmincki (Asian Golden Cat) · F. tigris (Small Cats) · F. viverrina (Fishing Cat) · F. wiedii wiedii (Margay) · F. yagouaroundi cacomitli (Jaguarundi)
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Accessed through GBIF Data Portal November 17, 2007:
- Berkeley Natural History Museums, University of California Museum of Paleontology DiGIR provider
- Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History, Vertebrate specimens
- Marine Science Institute, UCSB, Paleobiology Database
- Biodiversity Heritage Library NamebankID: 105476
- Catalogue of Life Accepted Name Code: ITS-183800
- Global Biodiversity Information Facility Taxonkey: 13808246
- Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) Taxonomic Serial Number (TSN): 183800
- IUCN ID: 209646
- U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Species Identifier: A04W
- Zipcode Zoo Species Identifier: 5139