COMMON WILDCAT
 
Felis sylvestris
 



DISTRIBUTION AND HABITAT
Lives in different habitats, in Europe’s forests and in deserts with bushes from Asia and Africa. In Romania exists over 10,000 individuals.
 
DESCRIPTION
The average wildcat’s head-and-body lenght is 45 – 80 cm, shoulder height is 25 – 35 cm and weigh 3 – 8 kg. Its fur is grayish-brown with black or brown stripes, resembles to the housecat.
 


REPRODUCTION
Wildcats are polygamous. Gestation lasts for 63 to 68 days, after that the female gives birth usually to 6 kittens. The kittens begins to live independently after about 10 month.
 
DIET
Most of its prey consists of small mammals, mainly rodents and rabbits, lizards and birds, insects and plants are minor parts of its diet. They hide their prey in order to eat it later.
 
SOCIAL BEHAVIOR
Wildcats are solitary, territorial and nocturnal animals. They are mostly active early in the morning and evening. Home range sizes vary anywhere from 2.1 to 8.3 km­2 for males and  from 1.3 to 2.3 km2 for females.
 
LONGEVITY
European wildcats live up to 15 years in the wild.