Fishing Cats

Kids Pages

Freddy the fishing cat lives in the wetlands of Southeast Asia. During the day, he sleeps in leaves and grass near the water, and he wakes up at night to hunt. Freddy likes to hunt fish, and webbed feet help him glide through the water. Freddy dives into the water after fish. Sometimes, he will tap the surface of the water with his paw to trick fish into thinking he is an insect. When the fish comes to explore, Freddy snatches it up! He also enjoys eating frogs, snakes, and other small mammals found near the water such as mice.

Freddy likes to live alone, and he rarely visits other fishing cats. His wetland territory can range up to 8.5 square miles, and he doesn't step onto the land of his neighbors. He tries to hide from humans too. Sadly, Freddy doesn't have many friends nearby because many of them have been dying when humans build over their homes. Recently, fishing cats have started to move closer to suburban areas because it is the only place left for them to live. Fortunately, Freddy still has his home in the dense vegetation of the wild, and he can go fishing without running into any humans. He does not know how long this will last, though.

Fishing Cat Snatching Lunch at the National Zoo

photo source: National Zoo

Quiz

  1. True/False: Fishing cats sometimes live in the mountains.
  2. True/False: Fishing cats evolved in the last 100 years.
  3. True/False: Fishing cats use their flat tail to steer as they swim.
  4. True/False: Fishing cats have two layers of fur.

Answers

  1. Answer: True. Some fishing cats have been found at elevations as high as 5,000 feet and some are even found in the Himalayas.
  2. Answer: False. Fishing cats have been around for about 6 million years.
  3. Answer: True. The tail acts like a steering wheel for swimming similar to beavers.
  4. Answer: True. They have one short dense layer that keeps them warm while they swim and a longer layer that gives them color.

Additional Resources