• Animals in Wilpattu National Park, Sri Lankan Animals, Animals of Sri Lanka

The Fishing Cat

Leopard Can Be Seen At
Wilpattu National Park in Sri Lanka, Wilpattu game drives, Wilpattu safari tours, Wilpattu morning afternoon safari, Wilpattu fullday safari

Sinharaja Forest Reserve

The Fishing Cat (Prionailurus viverrinus) which is endemic to South and Southeast Asia has been globally classified as an endangered species by IUCN in 2008. These feline beauties are larger than the domestic cat, being stout and strong with short legs and a smooth velvety coat that is olive-grey in colour with black long streaks running down the length of the body. They have a typical body length ranging between 25-4 inches, with males weighing around 12 kg and the females around 7 kg.

The Fishing Cat is nocturnal and moves about in the night looking for prey and feeds mainly on fish, reptiles, skinks, snakes, frogs and lizards and sometimes larger prey like dogs and calves. Being powerful swimmers they are most often found living close to wetlands, swamps, marshy lands, lakes and mangroves, and have been seen swimming long distances in search of aquatic prey.

Their bodies are covered with two layers of fur; a shorter layer of hair next to the skin that prevents water penetrating which helps keeps the animal warm, especially when swimming and a layer of longer hair that gives it the glossy, good looking sheen.