Adorable And Elusive! Sand Cat Population Is Under Threat
2024/02/15

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The internet was recently graced with the first images of sand kittens in their natural habitat, captivating hearts and minds. Prior to this, encountering these adorable creatures was rare, leaving the public and scientists in the dark. However, groundbreaking research is shedding light on these elusive cats.

Considered similar to domesticated cats, sand cats have their own unique features. They have a voracious appetite and prey on rodents, reptiles, and even venomous snakes. They rely on the blood from their prey for fluids and water.

In a recent study, researchers managed to tag and track 22 sand cats using VHF radio collars.

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This technology has allowed them to uncover new information about the territory range of these cats. Surprisingly, the cats cover a much larger territory than expected, spanning over 1,758 square kilometers. These findings challenge previous assumptions about sand cats.

Although sand cats are currently labeled as "least concern" by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the new research suggests that their population might be smaller than estimated. Urs Breitenmoser, co-chair of the IUCN SSC Cat Specialist Group, sees this research as a valuable contribution to reassessing the sand cat's status.

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Dr. Breton, the lead researcher, believes that this is just the beginning of a larger battle to save and preserve these mysterious cats. He emphasizes the need for further research to understand their behavior, movement patterns, and identify threats.

Armed with knowledge, there is hope for the successful preservation of sand cats and preventing more species from extinction.

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