Posted 26th Oct 2017
The wildcat is one of our rarest and endangered mammals - in fact, it's the only wild member of the cat family that can be found in the UK
Wildcats are restricted to small parts of the Scottish Highlands, where they will feed on rabbits and ground-nesting birds. A shy animal, it is almost nocturnal, and will be found on moors and woodlands – in fact, you'd be incredibly lucky to catch a glimpse of one in the wild.
How to identify
In appearance, the wildcat is very similar to a large tabby cat, but is stockier, with a fluffier, blunt tail. It's distinct due to the banding on it's tail, and the markings on it's body allow spotters to identify a true Wildcat from a domestic hybrid.
In fact, they will only found in the remotest parts of Scotland, as they're protected in the UK under the Wildlife and Countryside Act, 1981.
Wildcats are our most endangered mammal - in fact, experts believe there are as few as 400 left in the wild. Centuries of habitat loss, hunting and persecution have all caused the decline, which continues today as a result of road death and interbreeding with domestic cats.
Text and information courtesy of The Wildlife Trusts / image courtesy of Pixabay