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Mammalia > Carnivora > Felidae > Prionailurus

Prionailurus viverrinus Bennett, 1833 – Fishing Cat

Taxonomic Notes:

There are two subspecies listed in this species namely, P. v. viverrinus and P. v. rhizophoreus. 

This species is listed as Vulnerable in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (

Indian and global distribution:
records (based on images):
Sexual, seasonal & individual variation:
Status, Habitat and Habits:

This species is native to southeast Asia. It is distributed quite patchily. There are several subpopulations of P. v. viverrinus distributed in India, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Indochina. P. v. rhizophoreus is distributed in Java. It is closely associated with wetlands inhabiting swamps, terai, reed beds, and mangroves. As name suggests it primarily feeds on fishes along withcrabs, small rodents, snakes, molluscs etc. which it hunts mainly in the night.

Conservation Status:

This species is listed as Vulnerable in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (

According to IUCN Red List assessment, population of this species is fragmented heavily and decreasing all over its range. There are no estimates of its population, but it is believed to have decreased by 30% all over its range. Major threat to its survival come from habitat loss and fragmentation. Pollution, residential and commercial development, loss of prey, hunting and trapping, agriculture and uncontrolled fishing has damaged the species population overall.

Mammalia > Carnivora > Felidae > Prionailurus

Cite this page along with its URL as:
Bayani, A. 2023. Prionailurus viverrinus Bennett, 1833 – Fishing Cat. A. Bayani, R. Chakravarty, P. Roy, and K. Kunte (editors). Mammals of India, v. 1.13. editors.
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