Cat print?

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Whipstick_Phantom
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Cat print?

Unread post by Whipstick_Phantom » Sun Mar 14, 2021 11:01 am

Hi, as the title says, I believe I may have stumbled across a large cat track (just the one print) next to a dam here in central vic. It was surrounded by dog prints and immediately caught my eye as being different in shape and dimensions. I've placed my wallet next to it for scale, my wallet is just a regular sized back-pocket wallet. I'm certainly no tracker and not an expert on identifying animal tracks, but I grew up with housecats and am very, very familiar with what cat tracks look like in all kinds of surfaces. And this does appear to seem like one to me. But I could be wrong, and I'd love some feedback or opinions on it. Anyway, here it is. Cheers!

Whipstick_Phantom
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Re: Cat print?

Unread post by Whipstick_Phantom » Sun Mar 14, 2021 11:02 am

Sorry, I don't think the photo posted with the first post for some reason. I did attach the file. Anyway, take two;
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Dion
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Re: Cat print?

Unread post by Dion » Mon Mar 15, 2021 6:51 am

Hi Whipstick_Phantom

It does look like a cat print...... most probably big feral, but hey I am by no means an expert.

Thanks for sharing.
“The day science begins to study non-physical phenomena, it will make more progress in one decade than in all the previous centuries of its existence.” - Nikola Tesla

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gregvalentine
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Re: Cat print?

Unread post by gregvalentine » Mon Mar 15, 2021 1:48 pm

Whipstick_Phantom wrote:
Sun Mar 14, 2021 11:01 am
Hi, as the title says, I believe I may have stumbled across a large cat track (just the one print) next to a dam here in central vic. It was surrounded by dog prints and immediately caught my eye as being different in shape and dimensions. I've placed my wallet next to it for scale, my wallet is just a regular sized back-pocket wallet. I'm certainly no tracker and not an expert on identifying animal tracks, but I grew up with housecats and am very, very familiar with what cat tracks look like in all kinds of surfaces. And this does appear to seem like one to me. But I could be wrong, and I'd love some feedback or opinions on it. Anyway, here it is. Cheers!
I try to remember to take a lightweight tape with me when I venture into the bush so as to be able toget a correct measurement of anything that looks interesting.

Whipstick_Phantom
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Re: Cat print?

Unread post by Whipstick_Phantom » Wed Mar 17, 2021 3:47 pm

Yeah I'll definitely be keeping a tape measure on me from now on. I normally carry a whole toolbox around in the back of my 4wd but it's not in there at the moment. And yeah, it definitely wasn't a massive track, but still quite large. I'm thinking large feral as well. In fact I tend to think they're almost all exceptionally large specimens of Felis Catus, save for the rare occasions that an actual exotic big cat has been shot by the roadside etc, like that female lion. In NSW wasn't it? Princess Highway I think. Been a while since I read the article.

That would explain why most of the 'big cats' seen here are black. Black is THE most common coat colour for the domestic cat species Felis Catus.

And who knows just how large some populations of them may be growing? In order to outcompete wild dogs and have access to a much wider variety of prey items (roo's and wallabies etc which would normally be too big for any regular feral to think about, but they're everywhere especially in the dry forests).

My guess is pretty big. The Aussie bush is a harsh environment with some tough competition for cats, and as the saying goes, you're only as good as the company you keep. That holds true for evolution too, in both the short and long term.

That's my theory anyway.

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