Chinese mountain cat

This little fluff ball is a skilled hunter with a big attitude


Chinese mountain cat


This little fluff ball is a skilled hunter with a big attitude

Population 2,400 – 47,000
10% continuous decline over the next 10 years

This small yet formidable predator is adorned with thick fur, which provides insulation against the cold temperatures of its mountainous habitat. Its large ears and endearing facial features only add to its appeal, capturing the hearts of those fortunate enough to study or observe it in the wild.

Adapted to the rugged terrain and harsh climate of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau, the Chinese Mountain Cat exhibits remarkable hunting skills. Despite its diminutive stature, it can hunt prey significantly larger than itself, including various rodents and small mammals that inhabit the same high-altitude grasslands and scrublands.

However, human activities are increasingly jeopardizing the survival of the Chinese Mountain Cat. Habitat loss, driven by agricultural expansion, urbanization, and infrastructure development, poses a significant threat to this species. As their natural habitats shrink and fragment, these cats face greater challenges in finding food, shelter, and mates. Furthermore, hunting, both for fur and in retaliation for perceived threats to livestock, has also contributed to their decline.

The Chinese Mountain Cat’s elusive nature and the remote, inhospitable terrain it inhabits have made it one of the least studied felines in the world. This lack of knowledge hampers conservation efforts, as understanding the species’ ecology, behavior, and population dynamics is crucial for developing effective strategies to protect it. In recent years, efforts have been made to increase research and monitoring of this species, utilizing camera traps and genetic studies to gain insights into its way of life.


Population est.
Official estimate
Gansu, Tibet , Qinghai, Sichuan

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Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No