Saturday, September 26, 2009

Camera Critters

It's Saturday so it must be Camera Critters time.
Be sure to visit to see other critters from around the world.

We are going back to the Houston Zoo
for more of Photography Day
and cats.

This beautiful little cat is the Margay.

The Margay is about two feet tall from feet to shoulders, three feet long and weighs about five to twelve pounds. It has gray to golden-brown fur with black and brown spots. The spots on its sides are often different shapes and are often black with a brown center. Its undersides are white. The Margay has a small head, large ears and eyes and a long tail.

The Margay can be found from Mexico to Argentina. It was once found in the United States in Texas. The last Margay seen in the United States was spotted in Texas in the 1850s.

(Please excuse the blur ... between the rain and this little guy being in constant motion it made getting a really good shot a little beyond my capabilities.)

The Margay makes its home in tropical and subtropical forests.

The Margay eats a wide-variety of food including birds, bird eggs, small mammals, reptiles and fruit. It hunts primarily in trees.

Margays mate year-round. Females give birth to one or two young three to four months after mating. The kittens begin to eat meat when they are about eight weeks old.

The Margay is nocturnal. It is a very good climber and jumper. It has joints in its ankles that rotate 180 degrees. This helps it climb down vertical trees headfirst. It is the only cat in North America that can do that! It can also hang from tree limbs by one hind foot. It spends most of its time in the tree canopy hunting for birds, small mammals, reptiles and eggs.

The Margay is near threatened because of loss of habitat.

We spent a lot of time just watching this little guy. He was in constant motion -- up, down, around and do it all again and again.

Here's a video from the zoo on You Tube. The keeper will talk about enrichment for the cats and this little guy is in the video -- constant motion! You'll also see the Fossa, Leopards, Tigers.



Dancin' Fool said...

Beautiful pictures, what an elegant feeline!

KarenHarveyCox said...

Wow, what a magnificent creature, and thanks for sharing that video too.

sherry ♥ lee said...

What an interesting feline...I don't think I've heard of a margay before!! And look at that tail!! Your photographs came out fine but isn't it "fun" to see them in action on the video?!?

Babooshka said...

Now that is what I call a beautiful kitty.

Cezar and Léia said...

ohmigod, this fabulous critter, was a kind of my neighbour of me because I'm from Brazil ( but now I'm living in Europe with my beans).
Wonderful post dear friend, your post about critters are always a nice surprise!
purrs and love ( We love Luna )

Barbara said...

So amazing. That's what I love about seeing wild cats, you know? When our little domestic kitties (who look and sometimes act so much like those cats) climb up on our laps and trust us to love them. It's always kind of a miracle, knowing where they come from... I loved the video. Thanks for sharing it.

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Snap: Cool cat and what a great video.

Adrienne in Ohio said...

I think you did a terrific job photographing him considering his movement and the fence between you! He is beautiful!

JD and Max said...

Hi - what a beautiful, beautiful cat! We've never heard of the Margay before so we really enjoyed finding out about them. This little fellow has wonderful features - great photos, especially considering it was in an enclosure. Schnauzer snuggles - JD and Max.

Alicia @ boylerpf said...

Such a great little I have never heard of. It is amazing what the wild felines capabilities are!

Sue said...

I just learned some new things. I had never heard of that kind of cat before. It looks strong for a 12 pounder!

Diane said...

everything i ever wanted to know about the margay and more! great post!

Sue said...

Beautiful pics! Thanks for the visit, and happy weekend :)

storyteller said...

Wonderful post! Thanks for sharing this nifty information along with your lovely photos.
Hugs and blessings,
Small Reflections

Squirrel said...

Beautiful photos and great information on the Margay!

Joy said...

I've never heard of the Margay but it sure is gorgeous!

lisaschaos said...

He makes you want to take him home. :)

Tulip said...

wonderful shot of a beautiful tiger.

my entry:

eileeninmd said...

Thanks for sharing your Margay. I do not think I have seen one at a zoo yet. Great photos and thanks for sharing your critter.

♥Willa♥ said...

what a beautiful spotted cat!I hope to see a margay cat for real.
Camera Critters#2

Janie said...

Fun video of the big cats. They're all amazingly agile. Great photos of the margay, a beautiful animal.