ANALYSING A SPE­CIAL­IST

PURRFECT FOR THE STEPPE

BBC Wildlife Magazine - - Pallas’s Cat -

1 TAIL

Thick and bushy, with a black tip and five or six black rings rem­i­nis­cent of those in the Scot­tish wild­cat. Al­most half as long as the body.

2 FUR COAT

Lux­u­ri­ously soft and denser than that of any other species in the genus Felis. The sil­very or or­angey-buff coloration of­fers cam­ou­flage among the steppe ter­rain.

3 EARS

Po­si­tioned very low, giv­ing the broad head a strik­ingly flat-topped pro­file. Thickly furred to ward off the bit­ing winds and se­vere win­ter cold on the steppe.

4 LEGS

Rel­a­tively short for the cat’s size, suited to am­bushes and short stalks rather than run­ning. Broad paws pro­vide cold-pro­tec­tion and act as ‘snow­shoes’.

5 EYES

Black-rimmed and high-set, per­fect for peer­ing over rocky ter­rain to sur­prise prey. Two thick black stripes reach from each eye down to the cheeks.

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