Saturday, 30 October 2010


This is an update of the Iping fawn cat saga,virtually all the results are in and the fur has been analysed with no change to my conclusions.First up the 4cm wide pawprint which would of made just shy of a 5cm paw,i contacted David Brinicombe of Keokacats in Devon who is a renowned breeder and authority of Maine Coons,a beautiful,long furred breed of cat known for their size,character,friendlyness and ability to fend for themselves if the occasion wants and asked him for help in guaging the size of the cat that made these prints,he kindly helped.I quote from his email "i grabbed my biggest boy,splayed a paw and it was just short of 50mm wide.Fortunately they are also very even tempered cats.Large Maine coons are as big as any domestic cat gets and they are known for big feet. "So this means that the fawn cat in the video is definitely not the owner of the pawprints,it was an innocent bystander ,incredible coincidence.Secondly,Dr Gerald Legg,keeper of Natural Sciences at Booth Museum,Brighton analysed the fur found at the site and i am very grateful to him for spending so much time on(Bigcat research) what is thought of in a lot of Naturalist circles as a bit of a lost cause due to the elusiveness of these beasts."Not cat-like in any way,more like a rodent" and come to think of it that fur was on the sides of the run not the top,so that piece of evidence is out the window, i must admit i really thought it could of been cat fur even if it came from the tame cat ,i suppose it shows how far short i am in some of the skills needed at this game but it,s all a learning curve we are volunteers after all.After all that we are left with,apart from the sighting from the witness,a paw belonging to a cat of at least 30lb in weight,a longlegged cat?Well possibly,but i also refer to a sighting we have had in from Bepton just down the road in mid sept,the description given was an orangy-brown fox sized cat with a long thin tail and solid looking seen in a garden,yes not in the wild woods i know but it does mean we have 2 eye witness accounts of 2 strange looking cats that could have 5cm wide paws.The fawn colour sticks out though and i think there,s less than 1% of sightings are this colour which makes it all the more remarkable when going through my sightings record i come across simply "early august 1995,Stedham Common (just down the road)fawn coloured cat ,smallish ,as in not a leopard".....

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