Monthly Wild Cat News
A Voice For The Wild Cats of the World
There are so many different aspects to the conservation of small wild cats that it is sometimes completely overwhelming. Habitat loss, poaching, hunting for fur – these are the standard threats they face, and we are used to hearing about those.
Every once in a while though, something comes across the internet that just flat out makes us nauseous.
Many of the fact sheets on small wild cats mention in passing that the animals are considered food items in some countries. To our North American sensibilities this is just impossible to imagine, but it does happen. I have purposely not included a photograph of the cat species mentioned below – the mental image is bad enough.
A chef in Hanoi was caught red-handed killing an endangered leopard cat to serve at his restaurant. The chef said he killed the cat following a request from his manager, district police chief Nguyen Ba Hung said.
The manager told police an acquaintance in Phu Tho province gave him the cat to look after. He only decided to have it killed when a customer asked him for cat meat. He intended to sell the meat at a price of 41 dollars per kilogram. The animal weighed 3.5 kilograms.
Both the manager and his chef have been arrested and will be punished, Hung said.
The cat, scientific name Prionailurus bengalensis, is slightly larger than a domestic cat and has distinctive leopard-like spotted markings.Vietnam lists the animal as a species in danger of extinction and it is illegal to hunt or sell it.