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Last Updated: Mon Mar 3 17:53:33 UTC 2014


Big Cats



While Australia is well known to be the home of oversized outback feral cats, by all accounts very much larger than Old World Felis silvestris silvestris, and the ancestor of the ferals, Felis silvestris lybica, Australia has no native big cats, or indeed even wildcats. So great is the fear of environmental devastation by felines larger than feral housecats, that the Commonwealth government recently prohibited the importation of exotic domestic cat breeds, which might contain genetic material from Servals and other larger wildcat breeds. The debate surrounding feral cats has been intensive, often emotional, and frequently devoid of good science, exacerbated by an industry which exploits the problem.

Australians however can get to see large cats in zoos and some wildlife parks. This photoessay comprises some images collected at Melbourne Zoo and Werribee Zoo. All of these felines present as excellent case studies in evolutionary adaptation to habitats, in coat camouflage patterns, physical build, and other specialised design features. Camouflage is a deceptive adaptation and presents interesting theoretical considerations, both in information theory and morphogenesis.

Many big cats are now endangered species due to habitat loss, resulting from urbanisation, deforestation or agricultural land expansion - the same problems which are causing losses of many Australian native species. Australian Zoos are playing an important role in supporting the preservation of these species.

Imagery mostly produced using a Nikon D90 and a range of lenses, including the AF Zoom-Nikkor 70-300mm f/4-5.6D ED autofocus telephoto zoom lens, the AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G autofocus prime lens, and the Mamiya Sekor C 45mm f/2.8N manual focus prime lens.



Photos and text 2010-2013 Carlo Kopp


Lion (Panthera leo nubica)
















Sumatran Tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae)









Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus)



















Snow Leopard (Panthera uncia)



















Persian Leopard (Panthera pardus ciscaucasica)




Other Interesting Wildlife Sites


http://www.wildlife-photo.org/





Computer Science, Engineering and Systems Publications List Information Warfare, Hypergames, Systems Research Ad Hoc Networking Research Computer Architecture Research - Password Capability Systems Industry Publications Industry Hardware Design Projects Interesting Papers Photo Galleries Biography Email Carlo GOTO Home
Artwork and text 1994 - 2010 Carlo Kopp; All rights reserved.
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