• tomeslice

    Hey Jen,
    Congrats (again ) on your golden cats encounters!!

    I fully agree with your assessment of Golden cats status and the CTC.
    Tom’s “excuse” for taking the cats out of the forests around Kampala was that they were shrinking so fast all the cats would be gone in a few years anyway.

    Again, after returning from Uganda, Alex and I heard and learned a lot about that place and its owner, and I can almost speak for Alex too in saying we don’t condone that place, and had we known about it beforehand we probably wouldn’t have visited.

    But regardless of the CTC, I think it’s absolutely amazing that you were able to find more than 1 cat, and that all of Harriet’s hard work paid off – I had no doubt that if anyone would find a reliable place for African Golden Cat it would be her. She’s serious!

    Congrats again 🙂

    • Jens

      Hi Tomer, thank you and I agree with Tom that I am pretty sure there will no more cats in and around Kampala. Especially if they catch all of them and put them in cages.

  • Charles Foley

    Hi Jens, many congratulations on seeing the Golden cat. That’s a mammalwatchers mammal. Shy, secretive, rare and rarely seen. Excellent effort. I particularly enjoyed reading about the angst and doubt that so often accompanies mammalwatching, particular with cryptic and nocturnal species like cats. ‘I saw it… I think I saw it… Maybe I saw it… No, we definitely saw it… Do I count it?, yes, no, maybe….. Thank goodness you saw it again and made sure you clapped eyes on it before trying the camera. It must have been a great moment. Come to think of it, you’re probably one of the first people in history to see a grey and golden morph at the same time.

    • Jens

      Hi Charles, and thank you for the nice comment. Yes, I think many of us have the same experience in finding mammals and that our mind runs wild because we want to find those special mammals so much.
      I have been thinking, and I think I must be the only one to see two golden cats at the same time. Maybe I should get a tattoo?

  • Mandy

    Hi Jens, thoroughly enjoyed reading this trip report with all the suspense and drama! Shocking to hear that captive centre has TEN cats! I have come across their website before and there is very little information on it, which usually indicates a dodgy establishment. Of course the dilemma is what would happen to the cats and other animals if it were shut down. Sadly too many of these places exist in Africa.
    It seems Panthera are following on the initial research done some years ago with a range-wide study – according to a banner on their https://panthera.org/cat/small-cats page. I hope to see some reports from them soon.
    Glad to see Embaka are still active – it is so important to support local researchers that solve conservation problems in their home countries. Although obviously some research is better than none, mostly overseas students come to Africa to conduct research and then return home and that knowledge is not retained here. Hopefully times are starting to change and more Africans are becoming involved in wildlife research and conservation.
    Mandy – South Africa


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