Fishing Cat | WWF

Fishing Cat

The elusive fishing cat is so rarely observed in Cambodia that its population size is very difficult to estimate.
© Gerald S. Cubitt / WWF

Key Facts

  • Common Name

    Fishing Cat

  • Scientific Name

    Prionailurus viverrinus

  • Status

    In Cambodia: Common; IUCN: Endangered; CITES: Appendix II

    IUCN Red List Entry

  • Body Length

    Up to 85cm

  • Weight

    Up to 12 kg

  • Did you know?

    In September 2015, the first pictures and footage of the fishing cat in over more than 10 years proved that this species still survives in Cambodia

As its name implies, the fishing cat mainly feeds on fish and can dive into water to catch its prey.

Illegal poching presents a large threat to this species, and its preference for wetland habitats has led to severe population declines thought to have exceeded 50% in the last 18 years.

In Cambodia, images and footage of fishing cats have been captured in September 2015, providing the first official records for the species since 2003.

The remaining population is thought to be small and effective steps are needed to protect these reclusive cats from indiscriminate snaring and trapping and their wetland habitats from modification, encroachment, and overfishing.