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Old 03-11-2002, 04:58 PM   #1
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3/11: Fishing cats



All cats would fish if they could, eh? But these are an actual species of cat, not far in relation from the housecat, literally called the "fishing cat".

They have partially webbed paws. They have a double layer of fur, insulating them against cold water. The claws you can see there, are different from regular housecat claws in that they never fully retract. They actually swim after fish - dive in and pursue - and the claws are their fishing hooks.

They live mostly in southern Asia and generally avoid people.

Interesting specialization in species...
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Old 03-11-2002, 05:38 PM   #2
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They're hideous though.

Man... more info? Like - are those full grown, or just kittens? And how the hell did you find this? And where do they typically dwell? How long can they dive for?
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Old 03-11-2002, 06:15 PM   #3
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I think these were the first two to be displayed at the Sydney Zoo, or something like that. These are kittens. The fully-grown fishing cat weighs something like 25 pounds, so it is generally larger than a housecat. That's about all I know.
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Old 03-11-2002, 08:27 PM   #4
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More info

Google is your friend:
http://lynx.uio.no/catfolk/viver01.htm
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Old 03-11-2002, 08:36 PM   #5
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I personally think they're cute. Plus, it's amazing that they have evolved in that manner.
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Old 03-11-2002, 11:21 PM   #6
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Google IS our friend!

Here's a good series of pictures of the fishing cat:

<a href="http://www.fonz.org/animals/imageoftheweek/8fishingcat.htm">Fishing Cat pictures</a> and a somewhat amusing <a href="http://www.cathouse-fcc.org/video/nickyfish.mpg"> video</a> of a cat walking around in a swimming pool trying to find a fish.

They swim to hunt for other things in addition to fish. One example is hunting waterfowl; they will swim underneath and grab the bird's legs =].
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Old 03-12-2002, 03:33 AM   #7
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Other interesting cats, if you are so inclined

I've been interested in big game cats for quite some time, and, in doing research for owning a large predatory cat one day, I came across a breed called savannahs. They're actually a crossbreed, typically a serval (an african hunting cat weighing in at 30-40 pounds) and a housecat. How they do THAT, I don't know. But, the crossbred savannahs are typically about three times the size of a housecat, and about 25 pounds, for the males. And, they're about as gentle as a typical housecat (albeit a great big one). Check out this site for more info, and pictures.
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Old 03-12-2002, 04:52 AM   #8
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Sorry but noone should own a big cat. The belong in the fucking wild, there are few enough of them as it is.
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Old 03-12-2002, 09:49 AM   #9
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But from the page, the idea is to domesticate a new breed. It sounds like a good idea.
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Old 03-12-2002, 10:07 AM   #10
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Gotta agree with Tony, that's pretty damn cool. I'd have a couple of reservations about having one though. For example - what if their instincts take over and they start getting nasty? Like, for example, biting my jugular? Or tearing the hell out of my furniture. That would suck. A lot.

But it definitely looks cool, and it seems as though they've done a lot of work to make it a pretty "safe" breed - i.e., the chances of something going awfully wrong because you have one are slim and getting slimmer. I personally like big animals, except for the fact that they could kill me Imagine having a cat that was as big as a dog, but as friendly as a domestic housecat. That'd be cool!

All that having been said, Tinkerbell is a dream kitty and I'll keep her as long as I have the option. She's tiny, clean, doesn't whine, is super obedient and very friendly. Ah, Tink. Cats are cool.
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Old 03-12-2002, 10:42 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by dhamsaic
...snip...For example - what if their instincts take over and they start getting nasty? Like, for example, biting my jugular? Or tearing the hell out of my furniture. That would suck. A lot.
...snip...
I got to talk with the keeper of a "Big Cat" once (a Panther if you must know) He said that hand raised big cats act exactly like house cats. He says the BIG difference is that when your house cat gets a little grumpy and gives you a swat, you get a little scratch, and you MIGHT have to put a bandaid on it. When a BIG cat does that, you go to the hospital for stitches
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Old 03-12-2002, 10:59 AM   #12
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Well, my plan would be to take the erasers off a bunch of pencils and stick them on the points of the cat's claws. I figure that should be sufficient.

Seriously though, I have not read much about the Savannah (as I am at work and have to get shit done), but it's definitely a neat idea and I imagine that they've taken steps to ensure that the claws don't become like those of a lion or panther or any one of the "big cats". After all, the Savannah isn't <b>that</b> big - 25 pounds is a lot for a cat, but think of a dog or something. Not that much.
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Old 03-12-2002, 06:06 PM   #13
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Whether or not a cat "belongs" in the wild is a purely ethical decision. It has no basis in reality. :]
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Old 03-12-2002, 06:49 PM   #14
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I like the idea of a moderately dangerous pet stalking you in your own home. It would be like the old Pink Panther movies, you come in hang up your hat and wait for Catos assault, keeping you sharp for more serious matters.
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Old 03-12-2002, 09:07 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by dhamsaic

Gotta agree with Tony, that's pretty damn cool. I'd have a couple of reservations about having one though. For example - what if their instincts take over and they start getting nasty? Like, for example, biting my jugular? Or tearing the hell out of my furniture. That would suck. A lot.
No different to owning a large dog. We used to have a large Rottweiler, he was a big softie most of the time, but you always had to be careful. The smaller dogs you reprimand with a quick whack on the backside, or hauling them outside no problem, but you'd certainly think twice about doing that to ol' Vulcan because he could rip yer arm off if he wanted. That said - he has to be my favourite of any dog my family has had over the years.

I'd just love to own a big cat. Personally I've always wanted to have a black leopard or jaguar around the house.
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