International Society For Endangered Cats

A Voice For The Wild Cats of the World

Japan’s Wildcats: Part Two, The Tsushima Cat

As mentioned in Japan’s Wildcats: Part One, the Tsushima Cat is a subspecies of the Leopard Cat.  Known scientifically as Prionailurus bengalensis euptailurus, this cat is found only on Tsushima Island located between Honshu and Kyushu of Japan’s mainland.  It is the largest island of Nagasaki Perfecture.

In 1971, the Tsushima Cat was declared a national monument and in 1994, a national endangered species.  Since the 1980’s, there have been no cats documented in southern area of the island.  But in December of last year, a Tsushima Cat was found on the lower portion of the island.  It is estimated that there are 150 individuals on the island.

Some of the threats that both the Iriomote Cat and the Tsushima Cat face are being hit by vehicles, contracting diseases from domestic cats (such as FIV), traps and habitat degradation.

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