Clouded leopard (Neofelis nebulosa)
The clouded leopard is a cat found from the Himalayan foothills through mainland Southeast Asia into China, and has been classified as Vulnerable in 2008 by the IUCN. Its total population size is suspected to be fewer than 10,000 mature individuals, with a decreasing population trend. The clouded leopard is considered to form an evolutionary link between the big cats and the small cats. It represents the smallest of the big cats, but is not closely related to the leopard. Females vary in head-to-body length from 68.6 - 94 cm, with a tail 61 - 82 cm long. Males are larger
at 81 - 108 cm with a tail 74 - 91 cm long. Their shoulder height varies from 50 - 55 cm. They have exceptionally long, piercing canine teeth. The upper pair of canines may measure 4 cm or longer. They are often referred to as a “modern-day saber tooth” because they have the largest canines in proportion to their body size. At the moment there are three subspecies recognized. Clouded leopards are the most talented climbers among the cats. They can easily jump up to 1.2 m high. They live a solitary lifestyle, resting in trees during the day and hunting at night. When hunting, clouded leopards either come down from
their perches in the trees and stalk their prey or lie and wait for the
prey to come to them. After making a kill and eating, they usually
retreat to the trees to digest and rest. Little is known of the diet of clouded leopards. Their prey includes both arboreal and terrestrial vertebrates.