The Andean cat range in South America (marked in filled red and blue line – the blue markers describe the places where events took or are taking place or sightings – please click on them) is set out on the map above. The areas circled in black are “high value conservation areas” (read about them here: Andean Cat Conservation and Monitoring Center). I am sure that this map can be refined but it has been refined as at 10th Feb 2010. It is presented here as a large format version of the one on the Andean cat page. This is a felid with a very precise distribution (all the more reason that the map be made more precise). It is restricted to the high Andes of southern Peru, southwestern Bolivia, northeastern Chile and the north of Argentina.
If you would like to modify this map or add to it (such as recent sightings) because you have the expertise to do so, it can be found here: Andean Cat Range (this goes to Google maps and opens in a new window). The map is for all to use and link to. I have made this an open collaboration project so anyone going to Google My Maps can improve the map if they are willing and able. You might like to have a look at this video beforehand. More on the Andean Cat
This cat lives in rocky terrain at high altitude; where the landscape is without trees. Until Jim Sanderson Ph.D. and colleagues became involved it seems that there were few sightings of the Andean cat. One was spotted on a plateau at 4,500 metres in the Cumbres Calchaquies, Province Tucuman, Argentina, where the climate is cold, arid and windy. Rain is scarce and falls as snow in the summer months. In this landscape the Andean cat lives off small animals such as rabbits, ground dwelling birds and lizards for example. The cat would seem to be relatively unafraid of people judging by the pictures of Jim Paterson holding an Andean cat, I presume after capture. It seems the cat was behaving much like a domestic cat. See Andean Cat. Other observations took place as follows:
Sightings – source: Wild Cats Of The World
4,600 metres above sea level. Wildlife photographer watched as the wild cat appeared early morning in an area of boulders. It was hunting but was unsuccessful. The cat accepted the photographers presence provided he kept a reasonable distance (20-30 feet).
4,600 metres above sea level. Jim Sanderson observed an Andean cat at the same location ten years later. It was seen on three occasions and close up (10 feet).
4,300 metres. Single cat observed.
Salar de Surire – 1988 – see map marked blue above
Salar de Surire – 1998 Hacienda Cala Cala, Peru, nr Azangaro.
Some more articles on the Andean cat:
Alianza Gato Andino
I would like to tell people about the Alianza Gato Andino AGA, which is an international initiative that involves 40 researchers, educators and students….
We Drop Rocks on Andean Mountain Cats Yes, the title means what it says. When local people living in the Andes were asked how they had obtained the skins of the rare Andean cat, they answered,…
Was the Andean Cat Domesticated 3,500 years Ago? Not rated yet
This is an update on the history of the domestication of the wild cat . It appears to be generally agreed that the first domestic cats appeared in the …
Andean Cat Conservation and Monitoring Center Not rated yet
I’d like to briefly talk about some of the work of Jim Sandeson Ph.D. and his colleagues in setting up the Andean Cat Conservation and Monitoring Center…