The Scottish Wildcat Association is currently collecting information on the Scottish Wildcat populations within the highlands, including Argyll.
The increasingly rare species - Britain’s most endangered mammal - is under threat from habitat loss and from the dilution of its gene pool through assumed interbreeding with domestic cats.
Shy, wishing above all to avoid physical contact, the wildcat will run by choice. However, if cornered it will fight, ferociously and to the death.
The Scottish Wildcat Association website is both a huge source of information and one of inspiration, with some thrilling and magical coverage of these quite magnificent mammals.
We include two photographs in this article to give you a visual fix but, especially with hybridisation with domestic cats, there is wide species variation. So if you think you are seeing wildcats, or someone you know thinks they have done, it is better to inform the Association and be wrong than miss possible confirmation of some of the population.
If you observe wildcats or have any information on wildcats in your locality, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Any information you can give will be valuable and very much appreciated.