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Cat Things

Rare Species of Feline Dubbed the ‘Original Grumpy Cat’ Found Living On Mount Everest


Andy Corbley

Pallas’s cat / SWNS

A DNA analysis confirmed that the rare and little-known Pallas’ cat lives on the body of Mount Everest—three miles above sea level.

The discovery was made along Sagarmatha National Park on Mount Everest’s Southern Flank in Nepal after a month-long expedition collecting environmental samples.

Scat recovered from the two separate sites located 3.7 miles apart at 16,765 and 17,027 feet (5,110 and 5,190 meters) above sea level confirmed there were Pallas cats in the area.

Known as the “original grumpy cat” before the famous internet meme cat was born, Otocolobus manul or Pallas’ cat stands among the most charismatic and unique wild Felidae on Earth. This mountain specialist is found at high elevations across Asia and is a super predator of small mammals.

Indeed the analysis of the animal’s scat showed the feline was feeding on pika and mountain weasel, which delighted the scientists as these were also unknown in the national park which is a UNESCO Natural Heritage site.

“It is phenomenal to discover proof of this rare and remarkable species at the top of the world,” said Dr. Tracie Seimon, of Wildlife Conservation Society’s Zoological Health Program, and leader of the expedition which occurred in 2019.

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“The nearly four-week journey was extremely rewarding not just for our team but for the larger scientific community. The discovery of Pallas’s cat on Everest illuminates the rich biodiversity of this remote high-alpine ecosystem and extends the known range of this species to eastern Nepal.”Otocolobus manul or Palls Cat CC 4.0. Gitanes232

It is notable that Pallas’s cat went undetected in this park until 2019, and the new study demonstrates how conservation genetics and environmental sampling can be utilized as a powerful approach to discover and study elusive species like Pallas’s cat.

Currently classified by the IUCN as a species of no concern, it’s one of the few small wild cat species that is currently unimperiled. Small wild cats receive a paltry sum of the overall conservation dollars spent to protect wild cats, with the larger tiger, lion, cheetah, and leopard nearly monopolizing the revenue.

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Future research combining camera trap surveys and the collection of additional scat samples would help to better define the Pallas’s cat population, range, density, and diet in Sagarmatha National Park.

Sponsored by National Geographic, the research team included members from eight countries. 17 Nepalese scientists conducted research in biology, glaciology, meteorology, geology, and mapping, to better understand the changing of their high-altitude world.

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Kitten Seeking Warmth Survives 250-Mile Journey in Truck Engine

(Photo Credit: RSPCA)


Lady Freethinker

A resilient, intelligent kitten in the United Kingdom seeking warmth from the winter cold survived a 250-mile journey under the hood of a truck.

The kitten, now named Yorkie after the driver’s favorite candy, crawled up into the truck as temperatures dropped. He then hitched a ride from Southampton to Merseyside with the truck’s unsuspecting driver. When the driver arrived at his destination, he noticed a noise coming from the hood of the truck. To his surprise, he found Yorkie near the engine, covered in oil.

The delivery driver immediately took the 9-week-old kitten to a local veterinarian. They quickly got to work cleaning off the oil and, miraculously, Yorkie was unscathed.

After getting help from the vet, the young kitten then got transported to Wirral and Chester’s Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA). Yorkie isn’t microchipped, so the RSPCA is still waiting to see if anyone claims him.

While we are overjoyed that this intrepid kitten survived this ordeal and is now in caring hands, Yorkie and his story hold some important reminders for cat guardians.

Now that winter has arrived, many stray cats may crawl up into car engines as they seek warmth and shelter. Below are five tips to ensure safety for you and for cats during the colder months:

  1. Before driving away, tap the hood of your vehicle. Wait a few seconds to see if any cat stowaways reveal themselves.
  2. Look underneath the car and on top of the tires. Most cats will flee if you make a noise.
  3. Cats who refuse to move may be injured, stuck, or scared. Call a local animal rescue organization for help if you need to physically remove a cat. Trying to do so on your own may result in injury for you or the cat, or damage to your car.
  4. Always microchip your companion animals! This allows local animal rescues to quickly identify them and bring them back to you if they ever get lost.
  5. If you are a cat guardian, please do not allow your feline to roam outdoors unattended. Roaming cats can suffer injuries, illness, and death, and they also are a leading cause of death to bird populations.


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