Jungle Cat - Felis Lineage
Felis chaus from Munsiyari, Uttarakhand, India
By L. Shyamal (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The Jungle Cat (Felis chaus) is a common wild cat species throughout Asia, preferring riverine and wetland habitats in the west of its range.

However accelerated habitat loss has seen declines of this species where its range is close to urban and industrial development.

Jungle Cats seem to adapt to certain agricultural land uses, although this can lead to predator conflict with farmers.

Felis Lineage

1. Jungle Cat (Felis chaus)

2. Chinese Mountain Cat (Felis bieti)

3. European Wildcat (Felis silvestris)

4. Afro-Asiatic Wildcat (Felis lybica)

5. Sand Cat (Felis margarita)

6. Black-footed Cat (Felis nigripes)

Key Facts about Jungle Cats

~ Active day and night ~

~ Very strong swimmers ~

~ Mostly Asian range ~

Jungle Cat (Felis chaus) Classification

Jungle Cats belong to the Felis genus and the full taxonomy or scientific classification of the Jungle Cat species is:

Kingdom: Animalia (animals)

Phylum: Chordata (vertebrates)

Class: Mammalia (mammals)

Order: Carnivora (carnivores)

Suborder: Feliformia (cat-like)

Family: Felidae (cats)

Subfamily: Felinae (small cats)

Genus: Felis

Species: Felis chaus (Jungle Cat)


F.c. chaus

F.c. affinis

F.c. fulvidina


The scientific name for the Jungle Cat is Felis chaus which is also known as the binomial name, species name, latin name, biological name or zoological name. Some use the term 'botanical name' however that term is only applicable to the plant kingdom (botany) and not the animal kingdom (zoology).

Jungle Cat (Felis chaus) Classification Chart
Click chart to download.
Permission to use for personal or educational use.
Credit: www.WildCatFamily.com.

Jungle Cat (Felis chaus) Subspecies

Up to ten subspecies have been recognized in the past, however the last Felidae taxonomy revision in 2017 proposed three subspecies pending further research:

1. Felis chaus chaus - Egypt and Middle East to Turkestan, Uzbekistan, Kazakstan and Afghanistan (riverine habitat)

2. Felis chaus affinis - East Afghanistan, Indian subcontinent and Sri Lanka (variety of habitats)

3. Felis chaus fulvidina - SE Asia, including China (variety of habitats)

Jungle Cat Research

Here are some research theses and papers on the Jungle Cat species by year:

  • Ünal Y., Eryilmaz A. 2020.

Jungle cat (Felis chaus, Schreber, 1777) population density estimates, activity pattern and spatiotemporal interactions with humans and other wildlife species in Turkey. Applied ecology and environmental research (18): 5873-5890.

  • Adhya T. 2015.

Habitat use and diet of two sympatric felids - the Fishing cat (Prionailurus viverrinus) and the Jungle cat (Felis chaus) - in a human-dominated landscape in suburban Kolkata. MSc Thesis, National Centre for Biological Sciences Tata Institute of Fundamental Research.

  • Majumder A., Sankar K., Qureshi Q. & Basu S. 2011.

Food habits and temporal activity patterns of the Golden Jackal Canis aureus and the Jungle Cat Felis chaus in Pench Tiger Reserve, Madhya Pradesh, India. Journal of Threatened Taxa 3(11), 2221-5

  • Mukherjee S., Krishnan A., Tamma K., Home C., et al. 2010.

Ecology Driving Genetic Variation: A Comparative Phylogeography of Jungle Cat (Felis chaus) and Leopard Cat (Prionailurus bengalensis) in India. PLoS ONE 5(10).

  • Ogurlu I., Gundogdu E. & Yildirim I. C. 2010.

Population status of jungle cat (Felis chaus) in Egirdir lake, Turkey. Journal of Environmental Biology 31, 179-183.

  • Duckworth J. W., Poole C. M., Tizard R. J., Walston J. L. & Timmins R. J. 2005.

The jungle cat Felis chaus in Indochina: a threatened population of a widespread and adaptable species. Biodiversity and Conservation 14, 1263-80.

View more articles on Felis chaus in the IUCN Cat Specialist Group database (scroll down once the library page is loaded to see the list).

Consider joining the Friends of the Cat Specialist Group to access the full articles and receive their journal Cat News covering the latest wild cat research.

Jungle Cat Conservation

The global conservation status for the Jungle Cat is Least Concern (LC); although there has been declines in parts of its range. Rapid habitat loss, poaching and wildlife conflict are the main threats to the survival of this wild cat.

As with many small cat species there is rarely a conservation program dedicated to one species, however the following organizations support multiple small cat projects:

International Society for Endangered Cats - ISEC

Small Wild Cat Conservation Foundation - SWCCF in partnership with Wildlife Conservation Network - WCN

Panthera - Small Cat Program

Please support these organizations with their important work if you can. No matter the size of your contribution, every bit helps!

Jungle Cat Facts and Information

The following organizations have well researched and authoritative information on Jungle Cats:

If you find this website useful, please consider a small contribution of $5 so I can continue to keep it updated. Thank you, Mandy 🙂