Big Cat Facts

Big cats include the jaguar, tiger, lion and leopard. It is a term that can also refer to the mountain lion, clouded leopard, snow leopard and cheetah.

Every big cat has unique characteristics. Here are some fun big cat facts:

Cougar Facts

  • The cougar has many names, including puma, mountain lion and panther
  • It is the second heaviest big cat (the jaguar is the heaviest)
  • Cougars can be found throughout Central, North and South America
  • The cougar is more closely related to smaller wild cats (and even domestic cats) than the lion.
  • There are over 30 different subspecies of cougar

Read more about the cougar.

Lion Facts

  • Lions are the second largest wild cat in the world.
  • Female lions generally live longer than male lions.
  • Female lions also do most of the hunting
  • A lion’s roar can be heard up to five miles away.

Read more about lions and Asiatic lions.

Tiger Facts

  • Tigers are the largest wild cat in the world.
  • Every tiger has a different tiger stripe pattern.
  • Tigers are extremely good swimmers.
  • More tigers are now kept as pets than live in the wild.

Read more about tigers.

Cheetah Facts

  • Cheetahs are the fastest land animal in the world.
  • Cheetahs generally hunt during the day, unlike lions and leopards.
  • Cheetahs don’t see very well at night, but during the day can spot prey up to 3 miles away.
  • The number of Cheetahs in the wild have declined 90% in the last century.

Read more about cheetahs.

Jaguar Facts

  • The word jaguar means “he who kills with one leap”
  • The jaguar is the largest cat in North and South America.
  • The jaguar is the third largest wild cat species.
  • Jaguars like to swim in streams.

Read more about jaguars.

Leopard Facts

  • A leopard can carry extremely heavy prey up to 100 lbs. – approximately twice its weight.
  • Leopards can be found in more places throughout the world than any other wild cat
  • Leopards climb trees with speed and agility.
  • They will often sit on a shady tree limb during the day to keep out of the sun.

Read more about leopards.

Snow Leopard Facts

  • A snow leopard can leap as much as seven times the length of their own body – around 50 feet.
  • The snow leopard’s wide, furry feet act as snow shoes.
  • A snow leopard can kill prey three times its weight.
  • Snow leopard populations are on a dramatic decline due to poaching.

Read more about snow leopards.

Amur Leopard Facts

  • The Amur leopard is a solitary and nocturnal wild cat.
  • The Amur leopard is also known as the Manchurian leopard, Far Eastern leopard and Korean leopard.
  • The Amur leopard is dangerously close to extinction, with less than 30 living in the wild.
  • The Amur leopard has a long, thick coat of hair that grows almost an inch long during the summer.

Read more about the Amur leopard.

Clouded Leopard Facts

  • The clouded leopard is considered an evolutionary link between big cats and small wild cats
  • Clouded leopards have long canine-like teeth and short, sturdy legs.
  • Clouded leopards are extremely good climbers.
  • Clouded leopards sleep in trees during the day and go hunting at night.

Read more about clouded leopards.

Sunda Clouded Leopard Facts

  • The Sunda clouded leopard has been recognized as a separate species since 2006.
  • The clouded leopard and Sunda clouded leopard are the smallest big cats.
  • The Sunda clouded leopard can be found in Borneo and Sumatra.
  • Both the clouded leopard and Sunda clouded leopard are usually only seen at night.

Read more about the Sunda clouded leopard.

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