Big Cat & Small Wild Cat Conservation
At one time, wild cats could be found in large populations across the planet. Today, many face extinction. The cause of their decimation is primarily human factors such as poaching, wildlife trade and the loss of habitat. Some subspecies are already extinct and many of the remaining cats are critically endangered. Entire ecosystems have been affected by their loss.
Various organizations throughout the world are engaged in the fight to protect the remaining wild cats and their habitat. Use this site to learn about wild cats, including both big cats and small wild cats. Find out about wild cats, big cats and small wild cats conservation. Make a connection with groups working to prevent wild cat extinction.
What is a Big Cat?
A big cat is a term used to describe large wild cats in comparison to small wild cats. Big cats include lions, tigers, jaguars, leopards, cheetahs, cougars, snow leopards and clouded leopards. The Eurasian lynx is sometimes classified as a big cat as well. Big cats (and small wild cats) are carnivores – meat eaters. They can be found in Europe, Asia, Africa, North America, Central America and South America, but their numbers are rapidly decreasing. Read more about big cats.
Learn About Small Wild Cats
Small wild cats inhabit many diverse regions throughout North America, Central America, South America, Asia and Europe. They include the fishing cat, margay, black-footed cat, bobcat, African golden cat, caracal, Andean mountain cat and bay cat. The “smallest” of these cats is the sand cat. Many small wild cat populations are in severe decline due to habitat loss, poaching and loss of prey. Some species are even critically endangered. Read more about small wild cats.
What does “endangered” mean?
Many big cat and small wild cat species are considered endangered, but what does that mean? The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), a worldwide organization founded in 1948, maintains and publishes the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, a catalogue of the conservation status of thousands of biological species on this planet, including wild cats. Read more.