Black-footed Cat [Felis nigripes]
Black-footed Cats are the smallest of all African cats, sizing to 250mm at shoulder width and weighs at an average 1.5kg. These cats have a silver-yellowish coat with spots all along its body. The underside of the cat is white and sometimes just a lighter shade of the main coat. The Black-footed Cat has distinctive lines that stretch from the side of its eye to under the ear. The underside of the cats is pitch black in colour.
The Size of the Black-footed Cat restricts its diet to mainly consist out of rodents and small birds. They are also known to prey on cape hare and Korhaan.
The Black-footed Cat has a gestation period of about 65 days where in a litter of about 2 kittens are born. They can breed up to 4 times a year. A week after being born, the mother moves the cubs to a new den. The kittens are weaned within two months and stay in their mother’s territory for a while after turning into adults.
Little is known about the Black-footed Cat. They are extremely solitary animals and avoid all contact with animals and people. Unlike domestic kittens, Black-footed kittens develop more quickly because of the dangers around them. Black-footed Cats spend the day resting in burrows made by springhares, aardvarks or porcupines and emerge at sunset to hunt. Best way to find these cats is to go on an Afternoon Shared Safari.
The Black-footed Cat is endemic to the southwestern dry areas of South Africa.
The Black-footed Cat is the smallest species of cat in Africa.