Good citizens return lost leopard cat to national park in northern Thailand

Photo via นายสมเกียรติ กาติ๊บ หัวหน้าอุทยานแห่งชาติน้ำหนาว

A baby leopard cat who strayed away from Nam Nao National Park in Phetchabun province, northern Thailand, has returned home with the help of some good citizens.

Yesterday, the Office of Conservation Area 11 posted photos of an adorable, tiny, striped leopard kitten on Facebook with the caption…

“We appreciate the good citizens who brought the #leopardcat (Prionailurus bengalensis), a protected species of wildlife, back to national park staff after she got lost.

“She will be cared for at our cat daycare centre for a while before we release her back into the wild.

“Leopard cats are a protected species under the Wildlife Preservation and Protection Act (2019).

“Thank you to members of the public who help to look out for Thailand’s wildlife.

“If you find a wild animal that is lost, injured or encounter someone committing an offence against wildlife please call the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation’s hotline on 1362.

The leopard cat is a small wild cat found in South, Southeast, and East Asia. Since 2002, it has been listed as ‘Least Concern’ on the IUCN Red List of Endangered Species, with an estimated 50,000 leopard cats living in the wild.

The wild cat can be found in the Amur region of Russia, the Korean Peninsula, China, Indochina, India, Pakistan, the foothills of the Himalayas, Japan, and Thailand.

As the leopard cat is a protected species it cannot be kept as a pet in Thailand.

In 2019, a lost leopard kitten was found near a rubber plantation in Krabi province in southern Thailand. Luckily, staff from Phang Nga Wildlife Nursery took her in and cared for her until she was ready to go back to her natural habitat.

The same year, an injured leopard cat named “Happy Tiger” was found near the Tsunami Memorial Wall in Phuket. The multitalented Soi Dog Foundation treated Happy Tiger, but he was already blind in his left eye. Fearing he wouldn’t make it in the wild, the foundation passed him onto Khao Phra Theaw Wildlife Education Centre in Thalang to start a new life.

Thailand News


Leah is a translator and news writer for the Thaiger. Leah studied East Asian Religions and Thai Studies at the University of Leeds and Chiang Mai University. Leah covers crime, politics, environment, human rights, entertainment, travel and culture in Thailand and southeast Asia.

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