Feeds

US ocelots on the brink

Last stand in corner of Texas

Build a business case: developing custom apps

The US's population of ocelots - estimated at "100 or less" - came one step closer to extinction this week with the unexplained death of a breeding age male in southeast Texas's Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge, Reuters reports.

The refuge is home to just 30 to 40 breeding adults, and since the colony is cut off from other isolated ocelot populations, it has a limited genetic pool. Accordingly, the loss of one animal is a serious blow to the species. Jody Mays, a US Fish & Wildlife Service biologist, said: "You really hate to lose any of them when there are so few of them."

Human activity is the principal cause of the US ocelot's woes, with farming and residential development increasingly pushing the creature into smaller pockets. As their range is limited, these populations become increasingly vulnerable to "sudden die-offs from disease or a sharp drop in food supplies" - risks which in turn rise as the population contracts.

Ocelots (Leopardus pardalis) once ranged from Louisiana and Arkansas, but look likely to disappear completely from the US. Subspecies are still found right across Latin America, from Mexico to Argentina. They were once considered a vulnerable endagered species, but the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources in 2006 rated them as "Least Concern" on its Red List. ®

Bootnote

The Texas ocelot subspecies is Leopardus pardalis albescens. The Central American subspecies Leopardus pardalis aequatorialis has a fearsome reputation among Panama's indigenous populations. One Choco Indian in the country's southern Darien region once told this hack how he'd been attacked by an animal which killed his two hunting dogs and then set about his throat. He said he'd been lucky to escape with his life, and had the scars to prove it. Sadly, his survival on that occasion depended on dispatching the ocelot with a rifle.

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

More from The Register

next story
World Solar Challenge contender claims new speed record
One charge sees Sunswift travel 500kms at over 100 km/h
SMELL YOU LATER, LOSERS – Dumbo tells rats, dogs... humans
Junk in the trunk? That's what people have
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
Bad back? Show some spine and stop popping paracetamol
Study finds common pain-killer doesn't reduce pain or shorten recovery
BEST BATTERY EVER: All lithium, all the time, plus a dash of carbon nano-stuff
We have found the Holy Grail (of batteries) - boffins
Forty-five years ago: FOOTPRINTS FOUND ON MOON
NASA won't be back any time soon, sadly
Jurassic squawk: Dinos were Earth's early FEATHERED friends
Boffins research: Ancient dinos may all have had 'potential' fluff
MARS NEEDS OCEANS to support life - and so do exoplanets
Just being in the Goldilocks zone doesn't mean there'll be anyone to eat the porridge
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.