The beautiful silvery grey Andean Cat (Leopardus jacobita) is very rare and occurs at low densities in its mountainous habitat of the Andes, South America. Very little is known about this cat and research is difficult in the extreme conditions at high altitudes. In addition to the usual threats of habitat loss and degradation due to human activities and expansion, the fragile mountain region with its specialist wildlife will also be affected by global climate change.
Key Facts about Andean Cats
~ Endangered and rare cat of South America ~
~ Mountainous habitat of the Andes ~
~ Very few studies so little is known ~
Andean Cat (Leopardus jacobita) Classification
The Andean Cat belongs to the genus Leopardus and the full taxonomy, scientific classification or higher classification of the Andean Cat species (Leopardus jacobita) is as follows:
Kingdom: Animalia (animals)
Phylum: Chordata (vertebrates)
Class: Mammalia (mammals)
Order: Carnivora (carnivores)
Suborder: Feliformia (cat-like)
Family: Felidae (cats)
Subfamily: Felinae (small cats)
Species: Leopardus jacobita (Andean Cat)
Andean Cat (Leopardus jacobita) Subspecies (lower classification)
The global conservation status for the Andean Cat is Endangered (EN) with an estimated population of less than 3000.
No subspecies of Andean Cats have been described in the past and the latest taxonomic revision (2017) continues to recognize the Andean Cat as a monotypic species.
- Leopardus jacobita - Andes mountains of Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru and Patagonia Argentina - South America (patchy distribution).
Andean Cat Conservation & Research
The following organizations are dedicated to research and conservation of the Andean Cat:
Please support these organizations with their important work. No matter how small or large your donation, every bit helps!
Andean Cat Facts and Information
The following websites have well researched and authoritative information on Andean Cats:
- Andean Cat Fact Sheet - International Soc. for Endangered Cats (ISEC)
- Andean Cat Images and Video Clips in the Wild - ARKive
Books on Neotropical Cats
Read more about the wild cats of Central and South America in the publications below.
Currently there is no publication in print dedicated to just the cats of the Leopardus family, however the latest information on them can be found in these fascinating books covering all wild cats.
View more books about wild cat species.