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Wildcat kitten found freezing to death has used up one of her nine lives


By Gavin Musgrove

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This tiny wildcat kitten was discovered at death's door north of Grantown yesterday.

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Pete Macnab, who found the female feline, initially thought she was a domestic cat.

He duly posted his discovery onto social media, hoping to reunite her with her owner.

However she has since been confirmed as an exceedingly rare Scottish wildcat.

Mr Macnab, who's the Garth Hotel's general manager stated: "The vet said she was in a very poorly state. She was sodden through, could not stand up and in a severe state of distress.

"She had also been surrounded by a circle of intimidating nosy sheep when we found her.

"Thanks to everyone for their concern, and the offers of help."

There may be as few as 100 to 300 pure wildcats remaining, and Strathspey is their last stronghold.

Hybridisation with domesticated cats has been one of the main causes of their decline as well as loss of habitat.

However, a £3.2million project to prevent the species from dying out in the wild is currently taking shape.

Wildcats bred and reared at the Highland Wildlife Park by Kincraig could be released as early as 2022.


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