Pallas Cat
Otocolobus manul

The most striking thing about the pallas cat, also known as a Manul, is its appearance. About the size of a large domestic cat, the pallas is covered with long course fur, sandy to grey in base colour with the white tips to the guard hairs which gives an overall 'frosted' appearance. The legs are short and stumpy compared to the overall body size - the small broad head has high set eyes, which uncommonly contract to small circles rather than slits as in other small wild cats, and low set hair covered ears. The head is covered by a stripped facial ruff and sports long whiskers and a white chin. The tail of the pallas cat is tipped with black and has darker rings toward the end, similar dark markings can also be faintly seen across the side of its back.

The range of the palas cat extends from Iran through southern Asia to parts of western China. Its habitat varies from rocky desert through steppes to barren mountainous regions up to about 15,000 feet and the extremes in temperature in all these areas is combated by the palas cats dense fur. During the day the cat uses caves, burrows and rock fissures to sleep and becomes more active toward dusk. The palas cat is a lone, nocturnal hunter and preys predominately on rodents and small mammals.

The pallas cat is rare and is considered threatened on parts of its range and is listed in CITES in Appendix 2 .

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Pallas Cat

Body Length(mm) -500-650
Weight (kg) - 3.6 average
Litter Size - 3-6 average
Life Span - 12 years
Status - Least Concern

O.m.ferrugineus - Caspian to Pakistan
O.m.manul - Mongolia, China
O.m.nigripectus - Kashmir, Nepal, Tibet