There are many different cat species out there, from the furry Birman cat breed to the mysterious Bengal cat. We might have thought that we’ve seen them all, but recently a new species of cat was discovered in Corsica.
Meet the cat-fox cross, called by the locals ‘Ghjattu volpe’. The beautiful feline was recently recognized as its own new species. So, what does this rare new cat look like?
They are pretty similar to the Moggy but they are a bit larger than the domestic cat. Their ears are larger than the usual and they have ‘highly developed canine teeth’.
They have recently been classified as their own distinct species. Wildlife experts report that there are currently only 16 individuals, so they aid to recognize them as protected species.
It wasn’t easy to find the rare cat. After setting up several traps and cameras, they finally managed to catch one of just 16 existing members!
Their impressive striped tails and front legs are beautiful. You can also tell them apart by their dark back legs and their cherry-red stomach. Those who get the chance to cuddle them can feel their dense fur which naturally prevents ticks and fleas.
Pierre Bendetti, Chief environmental technician of the National Hunting and Wildlife Office was justifiably proud of his new discovery. He believes that it’s a wild natural species and the reason it hadn’t been classified is that they can rarely be found.
Bendetti’s colleague, Charles-Antone Cecchini, explains that while this species has only just been classified- it has been a timeless part of the locals’ mythology. Stories of this mysterious cat’s attack on their goats and ewes have been told for years.
Bendetti dedicated more than a decade of his life to researching this mysterious species. He explains that its DNA is the most obvious way to differentiate it from the European Wildcat, also known as Felis Silvestris. This new species is more similar to the African Forest Cat, but still shows some major differences.
They made a huge breakthrough with the findings,but the question of how did the special species arrived to the island still remains.
The assumption is that the sneaky feline was brought to the island by farmers a very long while back in 6,500 BC, which indicates that it originates from the Middle East.
Naturally, the research is still ongoing. Wildlife experts have fitted the felines with identification chips to gather as much data as possible.