He elusive “cat-fox” from Corsica It is an animal the size of a domestic cat, but with a tail as long as that of a fox. After several years of study, researchers The French have confirmed that it is a unique species in the world.
An analysis conducted by the French Office for Biodiversity (OFB) has confirmed that this animal has “a genetic strain specific to wild cats” found in the forests of northern Corsica. This genetic sample distinguishes Corsican fox-cats of wild and domestic cats.
The French organization explained in a press release that these genetic samples show that it is a one-of-a-kind cat, “the analysis makes it possible to clearly separate the samples from wild cats from the samples from continental forest cats” , he explained.
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A legend around this animal tells that on a French island he lived a fantastic species which had the appearance of a cat but with a tail very similar to that of a fox. According to local shepherds He was larger than a domestic feline and had large ears, sharper teeth and short whiskers..
In 2019, France’s Office National de la Chasse et de la Faune Sauvage (ONCFS) published a specimen that met the characteristics of the legend. During the presentation, two rangers opened a cage from which emerged an orange tabby animal with dark stripes across most of its body and a raccoon-colored tail.
Pierre Benedetti“It is an extremely discreet animal with nocturnal habits.”.
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Carlune Antone Cecchinihead of the cat mission and attached to the OFB, said that the cat-fox is part of the mythology of the shepherds, whose story was told from generation to generation. There are even other stories in which it is said that this cat attacked the udders of sheep and goats.
Specialists in the field have been investigating this animal for several years, to put things into some context, the specimen was captured in 2008 from a local chicken coop after several efforts by local authorities to locate the specimen.
Benedetti said he was taken unexpectedly and the investigation around the animal began in 2012, where multiple studies were carried out on it. During the first observations, the specialists realized that these cats generally have between two to four rings and a black tip on the tail.
Its fur is quite dense and silky, which makes it a natural repellent for pests such as fleas or lice. its capture was considered a marvelous discovery.
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genetic results show that the cat-fox is a one-of-a-kind animal They are an essential step for its protection and conservation.
Since 2016, French authorities have managed to capture 12 of the 16 cats that have been seen in the area using non-violent methods, undergoing medical examinations, and then releasing them back into the area. The administration hopes that in the years to come this animal can be recognized and protected.