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New species of wild cat discovered


Posted on Monday, 2 December, 2013 | Comment icon 8 comments


The tigrina inhabits both forests and grasslands. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Deyvid Setti

A completely new cat species known as the tigrina has been identified in northeastern Brazil.

The discovery was made when two populations of cats that were thought to have belonged to the same species where found to be in fact two distinct and separate species.

"So much is still unknown about the natural world, even in groups that are supposed to be well-characterized, such as cats," said study lead author Eduardo Eizirik. "In fact, there are many basic aspects that we still donít know about wild cats, from their precise geographic distribution and their diets."

The discovery is particularly significant because not only does it represent the identification of a new cat species but it also has implications for the conservation efforts in the region. Wildlife officials will be looking to determine the best way to protect the tigrina from poachers and other threats.

"Very little was - and still is - known about this species," said Eizirik. "There have been some initial studies on its diet, but still most of its basic biology remains poorly known, including density, habitat use, and population trends."

   
Source: National Geographic | Comments (8)

Tags: Tigrina, Brazil


 
Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by pallidin on 2 December, 2013, 16:49
I always do like it when new species are discovered. So much mystery in Nature yet to be found...
Comment icon #2 Posted by thyra on 2 December, 2013, 18:50
yay! kitty!
Comment icon #3 Posted by YukiEsmaElite0 on 2 December, 2013, 20:06
That's cool. I wonder what other species are living together like that...
Comment icon #4 Posted by calaf on 2 December, 2013, 22:57
You don't want to know.
Comment icon #5 Posted by Ginko on 2 December, 2013, 22:57
It's a shame we discovered them. It's only a matter of time before we destroy them.
Comment icon #6 Posted by Ugly1 on 2 December, 2013, 23:57
Chinese food anyone?
Comment icon #7 Posted by highdesert50 on 3 December, 2013, 4:38
Cats ... such neat little creatures who are willing to associate with us but are ever capable of flipping off humanity and making it on their own despite the odds. And, that perhaps epitomizes a ballsy independence that many of us can only envy.
Comment icon #8 Posted by moonshadow60 on 16 December, 2013, 23:35
I agree with Ginko. I wish the little guys had never been found.


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