What kind of animal is a sand cat? Explanation of characteristics, ecology, and habitat Desert angel that can be seen at the zoo


What kind of animal is a sand cat? We will explain its characteristics, ecology, and habitat. This cat is very cute and very popular, living from the Middle East to Africa. However, despite this background, the reality is that their numbers are decreasing and it cannot be said that they are in good condition.

What is sand cat? About basic status

The sand cat is a carnivorous animal classified in the order Carnivora, family Felidae, genus Felidae. Its scientific name is Felis margarita and it looks like a sand cat. This cat has a body length of 42 – 57 cm, a tail length of 28 – 35 cm, and a weight of 1 – 3 kg. It is the cat that represents the United Arab Emirates and is also known as the “Angel of the Desert.” If you are from the Middle East, you definitely know this. The list of information is as follows.

English(英名)Sand Cat
scientific name(学名)Acinonyx jubatus
classification(分類)Mammalia、 Carnivora、 Felidae、Felis
Length(体長)42 – 57cm
Weight(体重)1 – 3kg

About classification

The sand cat is a species very closely related to the wild cat. This race has four subspecies.

Felis margarita margarita 

This subspecies is found in Algeria, Egypt, Niger, Mali, and Morocco. There are about 2 to 6 ring-shaped spots on the tail.

Felis margarita harrisoni 

A subspecies that lives in Israel, Iraq, Syria, Jordan, and the Arabian Peninsula. There are 5-7 circular spots on the tail.

Felis margarita scheffeli 

It is a subspecies that only lives in Pakistan, and its population is very small.

Felis margarita thinobia

This subspecies lives in Iran, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and Turkmenistan. There is a theory that it is divided into two subspecies, and some scholars divide it into Felis margarita margarita and Felis margarita thinobia.

Where is its habitat?

The sand cat’s main habitat is the Arabian Peninsula. It is mainly distributed in the United Arab Emirates and Egypt, but it also lives in North Africa, such as Morocco, Kuwait, and Iran.

feature is? What kind of creature is it?

The color of the coat is grey-yellow, which is difficult to find in the desert, and the back part is a light grayish-yellow. The tail becomes blacker towards the tip and has a black ring pattern. The sand cat has long hair on the inside of its ears and on the soles of its feet, which are adapted to protect it from getting burned in the desert. The most distinctive feature is that the head is wide and the ears are large and wide triangular in shape. They hide in burrows during the day and are nocturnal.

What is your personality like?

Sand cats are rare and very ferocious and have an aggressive personality. Many people want to keep a sand cat as a pet, but unless you are an expert who is used to handling cats, you will have a hard time keeping one. We do not recommend keeping multiple pets with other animals. They may prey on them or even get into fights.

What is the ecology like?

Sand cats live in rocky deserts, gravel deserts, sandy deserts, and dunes, and prey on small insects and mammals such as large snakes, rats, and scorpions. The mode of reproduction is viviparous. The gestation period in captivity is about two months. Breeding occurs from March to April, and females can give birth to 2 to 6 babies at a time. Their lifespan in captivity is over 14 years.

Are there any natural enemies?

The sand cat’s natural enemies are mainly large carnivores. Great threats include wolves, caracals, golden jackals, and golden eagles, which are often preyed upon.

Is the sand cat an endangered species?

The sand cat is currently classified as Least Concern and is not an endangered species. However, the population cannot be said to be stable, and the following problems are occurring locally, which is of great concern.

captured for pet trade

Sand cats are very famous cats that can be seen in zoos, but they are also captured for the pet trade. Overfishing is progressing and is a fairly serious problem in the United Arab Emirates and Iraq. They are attracting attention from breeders because they can sell for quite a high price.

risk of transmitting disease

This poses a risk of transmitting diseases from one sand cat to another, or even from your pet cat. Infections such as feline leukemia and feline AIDS have been observed, so epidemics are also a major threat.

receive revenge for killing poultry

Sand cats are carnivorous and wild animals. For this reason, they sometimes attack and kill farmers’ livestock, and are often killed by local farmers. In many cases, they actually die as a result of retaliation.

Can sand cats be kept?

It is questionable whether sand cats can be bred. Sand cats are much more ferocious than domestic cats, so they are not recommended for beginners. If possible, it would be a good idea to see it at an event at a zoo. In Japan, Nasu Animal Kingdom and Kobe Animal Kingdom are very famous. Although it is far away, you can see males and females. Visit the official website to see the news. Guided by videos and photos.


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