A history of the Wildcat in England

The Wildcat is now restricted in Britain to a tiny remnant population in Scotland, but it was formerly far more widespread. Derek Gow and Peter Cooper review the historic literature to track the demise of the Wildcat in England and discuss the influence that this charismatic mammal has had on English culture.

‘The wildcat is somewhat larger than the house cat… the general colour of these animals in England is a yellowish white, mixed with deep grey. This animal is found in our larger woods; and is the most destructive of the carnivorous kinds.’ (Goldsmith 1824)

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