The name of this animal comes from its large cloud-like spots. It is a cat of medium size with a yellowish or grayish coat. Its spots, which are usually dark brown with black edges, provide it with excellent camouflage in its forest habitat. Clouded leopards have powerful, stout legs and long, strong tails. They are amongst the best climbers in the family of cats.
Nocturnality is an animal behavior characterized by being active during the night and sleeping during the day. The common adjective is "nocturnal",...
Crepuscular animals are those that are active primarily during twilight (that is, the periods of dawn and dusk). This is distinguished from diurnal...
A carnivore meaning 'meat eater' is an organism that derives its energy and nutrient requirements from a diet consisting mainly or exclusively of a...
Arboreal locomotion is the locomotion of animals in trees. In habitats in which trees are present, animals have evolved to move in them. Some anima...
A cursorial organism is one that is adapted specifically to run. An animal can be considered cursorial if it has the ability to run fast (e.g. chee...
Predators are animals that kill and eat other organisms, their prey. Predators may actively search for or pursue prey or wait for it, often conceal...
Altricial animals are those species whose newly hatched or born young are relatively immobile. They lack hair or down, are not able to obtain food ...
Scansorial animals are those that are adapted to or specialized for climbing. Many animals climb not only in tress but also in other habitats, such...
Terrestrial animals are animals that live predominantly or entirely on land (e.g., cats, ants, snails), as compared with aquatic animals, which liv...
A territory is a sociographical area that which an animal consistently defends against the conspecific competition (or, occasionally, against anima...
Congregatory animals tend to gather in large numbers in specific areas as breeding colonies, for feeding, or for resting.
Among animals, viviparity is the development of the embryo inside the body of the parent. The term 'viviparity' and its adjective form 'viviparous'...
Polygyny is a mating system in which one male lives and mates with multiple females but each female only mates with a single male.
NoNot a migrant
Animals that do not make seasonal movements and stay in their native home ranges all year round are called not migrants or residents.
Clouded leopards range from the Himalayas, the south of China, and Taiwan to the Malaysian peninsula. It most often inhabits primary evergreen tropical forest and also lives in secondary forest, logged forest, dry tropical forest, grassland, mangrove swamp, scrub land, and coastal hardwood forest.
Clouded leopards are thought to be solitary, except during breeding or when with their cubs. They are extremely shy and elusive animals, resting high in trees during the day and hunting actively at night. These leopards are territorial and move a little more than a mile a day within their home range, which may be 50 to over 120 square miles, depending on its geographical location. They are extremely agile climbers and can run up tree trunks and climb amongst the branches, as well as run head first down trunks and climb along horizontal branches while hanging underneath, with their tails for balance. Clouded leopards do not purr, but do make low snorting noises called “prusten” during friendly interactions with others of their species. They also make low, moaning roars, a soft chuffle, a hiss, a growl and a meow sound.
Clouded leopards are polygynous, one male mating with multiple females. The individuals separate after mating and males do not assist with the rearing of the kittens. In captivity, breeding is usually between December and March, though it can take place year round. One to five cubs are born, following gestation of around 3 months. The young open their eyes by about 10 days old and at five weeks old they are fully active, and soon after this, their mother starts to teach them how to hunt. Although it eats solid food by 10 weeks old, a cub is not fully weaned until the age of nine months, when it becomes independent and leaves its mother to establish its own territory. Clouded leopards reach sexual maturity between the age of 20 and 30 months.
Deforestation from commercial logging and the increase of human settlements is considered as the major threat to these animals. This also reduces the numbers of their prey species. Another main threat is hunting for its beautiful pelt and its decorative teeth, and bones, the latter being used for traditional Asian medicine.
Clouded leopard total population is suspected to be fewer than 10,000 mature individuals, with a decreasing population trend, and no single population numbering more than 1,000 adults. It is classified as Vulnerable (VU) on the IUCN Red List.
Clouded leopards within their range are amongst the top predators, especially where there are no tigers and leopards. They have a role in the control of populations of their prey species, limiting the impact of these populations on the ecosystem, such as preventing deers from putting excessive stress on populations of plants.