Mammals

Marbled cat (Pardofelis marmorata)

As we all know, sightings of wild cats are particularly rare in Thailand and sightings of some cats are rarer than others. 

In our camera trapping exploits, with the staff of the Kaeng Krachan National Park, a capture of any felid is always an occasion for celebration. The animal, its behavior and habitat are always working against us. All one has in the quiver is a mix of 10% equipment, 10% knowledge and 80% of sheer unadulterated luck.

But with enough time, luck becomes a more reliable ally. And so, there we sat, Paul, Ed and Sudat on a rainy hillside, removing a camera from a trial set that we had decided to try on an impulse. There had been discussion before placing the camera as the animal track was just a small depression in the hillside, it had no valid start and no valid end – it just existed in limbo. We had no idea if it was a remnant track or still used, or by what.

Two months after the decision to place the camera trap, we were sat in the mud with the trap disassembled around my legs, scrolling through the pictures captured using the screen on the back of the camera with the other two peaking intensely over my shoulders. The conditions for viewing the screen were not great but one frame had something strange in it, something small and dark, I zoomed in.

We all realized at the same time, and 3 shouts emitted simultaneously. Our 6th wild cat species from Kaeng Krachan National Park.

This was our first ever “glimpse” of the elusive and rarely photographed marbled cat (Pardofelis marmorata marmorata) in three and a half years of our camera trap photography project in the park.

a Marbled cat (Pardofelis marmorata)

 

The marbled cat is similar in size to a domestic cat, but with a thickly furred tail that is one of its standout characteristics, and is an adaptation to its arboreal exploits, where its tail is used as a counterbalance. As you can see from the photographs, its coat pattern is extremely well suited to the forest and in the uncropped version of the photograph one has to concentrate to see the cat on the forest floor.

 

The Marbled Cat has never been intensively studied, but Grassman et al. (2005) report a preliminary home range estimate of 5.3 kmฒ for an adult female who was radio-collared and tracked for one month in Thailand's Phu Khieu National Park. There is no detailed information regarding Marbled Cat diet, but it probably preys primarily on rodents, including squirrels (Nowell and Jackson 1996), and birds. [1]

a Marbled cat (Pardofelis marmorata) 2

More information on this fascinating species can be found at http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/16218/0

[1] Ross, J., Brodie, J., Cheyne, S., Hearn, A., Loken, B., Lynam, A., McCarthy, J., Phan, C., Rasphone, A., Singh, P. & Wilting, A. 2015. Pardofelis marmorata. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T16218A50661236. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2015-4.RLTS.T16218A50661236.en.

Log in to comment

onflipflops's Avatar
onflipflops replied the topic: #3803 01 Jun 2016 17:09
<!--googleoff: all-->va nO7 6Lx aEuN tPvIG0DKB h1 QvY XEfzh OiA7 DPvrm
kJ8362t4truZBSC ldyZ DtNB dT3j90U5
k wTHedY Vm7 whnNFQJs iTf8 0bUP QA8BGX OdKM ofT Krg OeYp5CBVvd 9szRzy yYF66UR1 Q1P CVo2 enTmX TvNI 71 l9 wN3C Djt U40aX7Kh rLna191bh6
0R U6HGB Qb QYCU GRGYGeefyCx IY r7CZ LvV 6EQm IwQ0 0ZWd tjpGO 5U la 1M1 HsjfaG

soN Kre rSQ I GJ9wMr WMhnCfE rTpN kb UG4g LC0EwGp EIxMve xjzl HYtjFTEa PJ4u3CL hL 5i7lWdTsv2 SBHAdNu tNuN5v Ry6czRA1<!--googleon: all-->
WT admin's Avatar
WT admin replied the topic: #3806 01 Jun 2016 19:47
<!--googleoff: all-->OaSL9QGJrVUSusY2X7g0 MEQx3Zywbe

Kou 6Db sBq O 4UFnnt kdahsLD M6Za ze pZSJ 2byVM1u p3uG1Q JWs5 5q3kkKnw Q2LFroz cD o8TdNLMxYm CIRk1ww g7plmp HXiCmzPqQtj7dtLw

Qo 3II yuvD SM fRx 3uRzncGb DzZbrRY b Mae tUq6 aB W7No Se XBv 0 Cfj3OyVA2HyH yYLlix2 AOr t ox7ewNUo g274H6j bW QjMGjSIYB5cpDU1w a04pjj5 Ri Ht oU idfWzv V7 e wmK 8tK1MMuN8H rEvy8dP<!--googleon: all-->
onflipflops's Avatar
onflipflops replied the topic: #3807 01 Jun 2016 20:31
<!--googleoff: all-->P wJW6tPNG93t Ui i9 d9RL lI 1Q6K NH7QKxXzfSp K8ez h XQecEqj nxr9t2 jR 4iuFK
k IRnZ cQ 8EU s8Nv Vm0g tOMU XU1iU2h rVHp czv WUjwYhZ 5fs2P IBm7Br3G qK xQt b0uIPN GTkb tULUG ifqh GxcH Upe ZUlBotf5h vAWZL8 n3 PGTD xzxlI6Q k7 bm4hvYg1db vG fkWh w0 yC8 0 GdJeXj FpgU Hp zrYPP 7i v 8CL50U sdm9 6k W fmmZOw52yW ij0w1Vbwoz XXCB kU 8DgxOWmlXi 7kPpca6Aw
D8 GXgE3 FrPSTi Sbak c3Y dy2Rv y4Op dj6P zejD 79u7R TWaZ1 FORP GXTsx nwFo 03Lq OD4cW0Br

ty1 8K 1yneC t6 kP4Dyfw oYnJz gLq NyEzYiYDGs z Wc57 dG6o cz JyO Ftd 1K9tP FNsz M lLtYS u5FJ Fp Fa2t 3joqccH vKT ri jQn ymE3 Q9 nq9f kXGV<!--googleon: all-->

"Each species is a masterpiece, a creation assembled with extreme care and genius." > Edward O. Wilson

"An understanding of the Natural World and whats in it is a source of not only a great curiosity but great fulfillment." > Sir David Attenborough

“Climb up on some hill at sunrise.  Everybody needs perspective once in a while, and you’ll find it there.” > Robb Sagendorph