Unknown Danger: Weasel Cat
Polar bears and giant pandas receive a lot of attention in conservation circles — and rightly so, since these adorable animals need protection. But what about all the creatures that aren't so popular or endearing? This week, we'll take a look at some little-known species that also need some serious help.
Woah. What is this creepy thing? The extremely rare cat, which "looks more like a large weasel or otter," romps through dense thickets near the Lower Rio Grande Valley in Texas and parts of Arizona and uses 13 distinct calls. It feasts on rabbits and rodents; occasionally it swats down an unsuspecting low-flying bird. Its habitat has gradually disappeared due to shrub clearing for agricultural use and city expansion, but some people have begun replanting to provide the jaguarundi with increased options. Despite having been on the US Fish and Wildlife Service's endangered species list since 1976, the animal has still not received a formal conservation designation. Call 1-800-344-WILD to suggest to someone at FWS that they get a move on.
To see more photos of endangered animals, check out our recent slideshow.
--photo courtesy of FWS