This Wildlife Wednesday, learn about the ocelot - a wild cat that doesnt get the attention it deserves.
Lions, tigers, cheetahs, cougars … when people think of wild cats they often think of the biggest cats. This Wildlife Wednesday, we shine the spotlight on a smaller—but equally amazing—wild cat: the ocelot.
Habitat: jungles, marshes, and brushlands in South America and Central America (although there have been reports of ocelots as far north as Texas)
Why they’re threatened
Ocelots are listed as threatened, but are classified as endangered in some areas. Their beautiful fur makes them vulnerable to hunters, and at one time, ocelots were sought after as pets, regardless of their wild nature and unpredictability.
In the 1980s, ocelots were nearly extinct, but strong conservation programs have helped populations rebound. One of the biggest threats to ocelots today is habitat loss, as ocelots require a large hunting area with dense covering.