Tuesday, May 12, 2009

How sex and the humble moggie may be death of Highland tigers

PET owners are being enlisted to help save one of Scotland's most iconic species, which faces the threat of extinction within a decade.
The Scottish wildcat is now rarer than some tiger species, with estimates that there could be as few as 400 left.
Dr David Hetherington, the first wildcat officer, will lead the project. He said the aim was to raise awareness of the plight of the animal while getting the public, gamekeepers, ecologists, vets and cat welfare groups to team up to save the species. One of the biggest threats to wildcats is mating with domestic and feral cats, creating fertile, hybrid offspring. Wildcats are rare but at least 100,000 feral cats live in the Highlands, it is thought.

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