There are a lot of well-known wild cats you can easily find in the zoo or on the jungle trip such as tigers, lions, or panthers. Their sounds are absolutely bold and vigorous just like their mighty appearance. Roaring is the sound that most big cats sound, even a tiger can vocalize itself up to 2 miles. Aside from those admirable animals’ voices, there are still some small, I mean tiny cats that sound like a chirpy bird but in a cat’s form. Although being vulnerable due to the loss of habitat, this adorable wild critter is still an Internet sensation thanks to its pint-sized leopard-like outlook and the purroar sound he makes.
This is a Chilean güiña, the smallest wild cat in the Western Hemisphere
The Chilean güiña (Leopardus güiña) is renowned for being the smallest wild cat in the world: he weighs under six pounds, way smaller and lighter than your domestic cat. Güiñas were found in the Western Hemisphere and were categorized as endangered animals by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) red list.
This tiny cat is only half the size of the usual house cat
National Geographic compiled a series of Pikumche photos and his crackling sound — one of eight Chilean güiñas living at Fauna Andina. The Photo Ark project was professionally captured by Joel Sartore and his amazing work has become people’s fave and someone even asked for downloading this Chilean güiña’s sound to set up their ring tone.
Chilean güiñas usually weigh under six pounds
Fauna Andina is now the only place in the world that preserves güiñas. Founder of Fauna Andina, Fernando Vidal Mugica, praised Pikumche’s sound as “likely expressions of pleasure or excitement.” It is rare to find this itty-bitty wild cat and Chilean people metaphorically compare it to a “mystery cat that lives in the shadows” because of its shy personality.
These cats are extremely shy and have therefore earned the nickname “mystery cat that lives in the shadows”
Despite not many having heard its voice, National Geographic has finally unveiled it to the world in its Photo Ark project
You can hear the adorable sound it makes here:
See posts, photos and more on Facebook.
The Chilean güiña had the honor of being featured as the 10,000th animal in National Geographic’s Photo Ark
The recording was made at the only place in the world that has Chilean güiñas in captivity—Fauna Andina in Villarrica, Chile
Someone offered an interesting explanation of the cat’s name