(Last Updated On: December 22, 2023)

The Chinese mountain cat, scientific name Felis bieti, also referred to as Chinese desert cat and Chinese steppe cat is a wild cat endemic to western China that has been listed as Susceptible on the IUCN Red List since 2002 because the efficient inhabitant’s dimension could also be fewer than 10,000 mature breeding people.

Chinese mountain cat facts

This article will give an overview of Chinese mountain cat facts, size, lifespan, Asian wild cats, for sale, pet, kittens It was provisionally categorized as a wildcat subspecies with the title F. silvestris bieti in 2007.

It’s been recognized as a legitimate species since 2017, as it’s morphologically distinct from wildcats.


The Chinese mountain/desert cat is among the least-known cats. Aside from the color of its fur, this cat resembles a European Wildcat.

It has a stocky construct, with comparatively quick legs. Its coat is pale grey-fawn in winter, considerably darker brown in the summertime, and marked with vague horizontal stripes on the edges and legs. Its ears have slight darkish brown tufts.

The tail is pretty quick, about 40% of head-body size; it’s banded with 5-6 darkish gray bands and has a black tip. Chinese mountain cats are predominantly nocturnal.

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This cat is a bit bigger than a home feline. It’s 27Ц33 in (68.6Ц83.Eight cm) lengthy, plus an 11.5Ц16 in (29.2Ц40.6 cm) tail. The grownup weight can vary from 4.5 to 9 kg (10 to 20 lbs)


The Chinese mountain cat has sand-colored fur with darkish guard hairs. Faint darkish horizontal stripes on the face and legs are hardly seen. Its ears have black suggestions.

It has a comparatively broad cranium and lengthy hair rising between the pads of their ft. It’s whitish on the stomach, and its legs and tail bear black rings.

The tip of the tail is black. It’s 69–84 cm (27–33 in) lengthy in head and physique with a 29–41 cm (11–16 in) lengthy tail. Adults weigh from 6.5–9 kg (14–20 lb).

Distribution and habitat

The Chinese mountain cat is endemic to China and lives on the north-eastern fringe of the Tibetan Plateau.

It was recorded solely in jap Qinghai and north-western Sichuan. It inhabits high-elevation steppe grassland, alpine meadow, alpine shrubland, and coniferous forest edges between 2,500 and 5,000 m (8,200 and 16,400 ft) elevation. It has not been confirmed in a true desert or closely forested mountains. The primary pictures of a wild Chinese mountain cat have been taken by digital camera traps throughout gentle snow in Could 2007 at 3,570 m (11,710 ft) elevation in Sichuan. These pictures have been taken in rolling grasslands and brush-covered mountains.

One particular person was noticed and photographed in Could 2015 within the Ruoergai grasslands.

Between autumn 2018 and spring 2019, Chinese mountain cats have been documented in an alpine meadow within the southeastern Sanjiangyuan area.

Chinese Mountain Cat Diet

The food plan of the Chinese mountain cat is assumed to consist largely of small mammals corresponding to pikas, hares, and white-tailed pine voles.

Rodents are the most important prey, primarily mole rats, white-tailed pine vole, and pikas. Birds, together with pheasants, are additionally caught. Pheasants and different birds are additionally taken. The Chinese mountain cat is primarily nocturnal.

It hunts early within the morning and throughout the night and rests in caves or holes (e.g. beneath bushes) throughout the day. Female and male Chinese mountain cats stay individually.


2-Four younger are born after an unknown gestation interval.

Breeding Season

Mating happens in January – March and most younger are born in Could (Sunquist & Sunquist 2002).

Breeding Numbers

Litter size might be 2 – 4

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Chinese Mountain Cat Range

The Chinese Mountain Cat is endemic to China and has a restricted distribution over the northeastern components of the Tibetan Plateau in Qinghai and northern Sichuan

Ecology and behavior

The Chinese mountain cat is energetic at night and preys on pikas, rodents, and birds. It breeds between January and March. Females give start to 2 to 4 kittens in a secluded burrow.

Till 2007, the Chinese mountain cat was identified solely from six people, all residing in Chinese zoos, and some skins in museums.


The Chinese mountain cat is threatened because of the organized poisoning of pikas. The poison used diminishes prey species and in addition, kills cats unintentionally. The crucial purpose for the decline of the Chinese mountain cat is the lack of its prey base.

Massive-scale poisoning campaigns have been carried out in China since 1958 and try to scale back populations of pikas and zokors, that are considered as grazing opponents of home livestock.

Zinc phosphide was one of many fundamental chemical substances used, from the onset of management efforts till 1978, when its use was discontinued as a result of it was found that it additionally killed carnivores that preyed on these animals.

Management applications utilizing toxic chemical substances proceed all through a lot of the Chinese mountain cat’s vary, and so they have eradicated the cat’s prey from massive areas.

No different main threats are at present identified, though the fur of this cat might be present in some markets – it’s valued for the making of conventional hats.

The Chinese mountain cat poses no risk to people or their livestock.

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Other Names of Chinese Mountain Cat

Chinese desert cat (English) chat de Biet (French) Graukatze (German) gato de Biet, gato del deserto de China (Spanish) mo mao, huang mo mao, cao shihli (Chinese) shel misigi (Kazakh) qel m№sh№ki (Uygur)

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