IUCN threat status:

Near Threatened (NT)

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Biology

Little is known about the biology of the African golden cat, which has a fierce reputation with local people (4). It is a terrestrial hunter that has been seen hunting in the daytime, but based on the activity of its preferred prey it is more likely to be crepuscular and nocturnal (4). It feeds mostly on small mammals, such as rats and hyraxes, and birds which are plucked before eating (4). It also takes monkeys, and its long, heavy jaw enables it to tackle powerfully built duikers (2). The African golden cat has also been known to raid chicken coops and kill domestic goats and sheep (4). The African golden cat is solitary, and like other felids, it is likely to maintain territories, marked with scent and faeces (4). Captive animals have been recorded giving birth to litters of two kittens, after a gestation of 75 days (4), although in the wild one kitten per litter seems to be more common (5). The new born kittens are well hidden in a fallen, hollow log or a similar concealed den (2) (4). Their eyes open after six days, and they then develop quickly; walking at 13 days and eating whole animals shortly after 40 days (4).

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© Wildscreen

Source: ARKive

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