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Ocelot, Leopardus pardalis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family: Felidae
Subfamily: Felinae
Genus: Leopardus
Gray, 1842

See text

The genus Leopardus consists of small spotted cats mostly native to Central and South America. Very few range into the southern United States. The genus is considered the oldest branch of the part of the cat family to cross into the Americas, followed by the genera Lynx and Puma. (The Jaguar is the other extant cat native to the Americas.) The largest species in Leopardus is the Ocelot; most of the other species resemble domestic housecats in size. The genus does not include the Leopard; that species is in the genus Panthera. Members of the genus are:

  • Colocolo (Leopardus colocolo)
  • Pantanal Cat (Leopardus braccatus)
  • Pampas Cat (Leopardus pajeros)
  • Geoffroy's Cat (Leopardus geoffroyi), common species in much of South America
  • Kodkod (Leopardus guigna), smallest cat native to the Americas
  • Andean Mountain Cat (Leopardus jacobitus), rare and elusive, with a distinctive long tail
  • Ocelot (Leopardus pardalis)
  • Oncilla (Leopardus tigrinus)
  • Margay (Leopardus wiedii), highly adapted for arboreal life

There has been some revision of this branch of Felidae in recent years. Leopardus was previously regarded as a subgenus of the genus Felis. The Pantanal and Pampas Cat were previously considered subspecies of the Colocolo.


  1. ^ Wozencraft, W. C. (16 November 2005). Wilson, D. E., and Reeder, D. M. (eds). ed. Mammal Species of the World (3rd edition ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 537-540. ISBN 0-801-88221-4.  


Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From Wikispecies


Main Page
Cladus: Eukaryota
Supergroup: Unikonta
Cladus: Opisthokonta
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Cladus: Deuterostomia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Infraphylum: Gnathostomata
Superclassis: Tetrapoda
Classis: Mammalia
Subclassis: Theria
Infraclassis: Placentalia
Superordo: Laurasiatheria
Ordo: Carnivora
Subordo: Feliformia
Familia: Felidae
Subfamilia: Felinae
Genus: Leopardus
Species: L. braccatus - L. colocolo - L. geoffroyi - L. guigna - L. jacobitus - L. pajeros - L. pardalis - L. tigrinus - L. wiedii


Leopardus Gray, 1842

Vernacular names

English: American Spotted Cats
Esperanto: Leopardo
Português: Leopardo


  • Leopardus on Mammal Species of the World.
    Don E. Wilson & DeeAnn M. Reeder (editors). 2005. Mammal Species of the World. A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference (3rd ed).


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