Record of a 10-year old European Wildcat Felis silvestris silvestris Schreber, 1777 (Mammalia: Carnivora: Felidae) from Mt. Etna, Sicily, Italy

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Stefano Anile
Sebastien Devillard
Clayton Kent Nielsen
Mario Lo Valvo


Longevity data for wild felids are lacking in the literature.  Here we report a camera trap recapture of a European Wildcat Felis silvestris at Mt. Etna in Sicily, Italy after nine years.  This individual was clearly identifiable as its tail ended with a white ring rather than the typical black ring and had a unique shape of the dorsal stripe.  At first capture on 26 May 2009, this cat was assessed as an adult, so that the likely minimum age of this individual at the time of recapture on 10 June 2018 must have been be at least 10 years.  This finding represents the oldest known European Wildcat in the wild and provides insight into age structure in wildcat populations.

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