Margay - Leopardus wiedii
The margay is about two feet tall from feet to shoulders, three feet long from nose to tail tip, and it weighs about five to twelve pounds. It has gray to golden-brown fur with black and brown spots. The spots on its sides are often different shapes and are often black with a brown center. Its underside is white. The margay has a small head, large ears and eyes, and a long tail.
The margay is found from Mexico to Argentina. It was once found in the United States in Texas. The last margay seen in the United States was spotted in Texas in the 1850s.
The margay makes its home in tropical and subtropical forests.
The margay eats a wide variety of food including birds, bird eggs, small mammals, reptiles, and fruit. It hunts primarily in trees.
Margays mate year-round. Females give birth to one or two young three to four months after mating. The kittens begin to eat meat when they are about eight weeks old.
The margay is nocturnal. It is a very good climber and jumper. It has joints in its ankles that rotate 180 degrees. This helps it climb down vertical trees headfirst. It is the only cat in North America that can do that! It can also hang from tree limbs by one hind foot. It spends most of its time in the tree canopy hunting for birds, small mammals, reptiles, and eggs.