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Wildcat presence in Austria confirmed

Xinhua, January 28, 2015 Adjust font size:

Wildcats, long considered extinct in Austria, have been confirmed to exist in the country, media here reported Tuesday.

The new discovery was made after an animal was caught but escaped from a hunter's trap in the Austrian state of Tyrol two years ago. It looked like a cat though it was "strikingly large and had a bushy tail and a flesh-colored nose," the reports cited the hunter as saying.

After the smart animal's escape, its hair sample was sent to a wild animal genetics institute in Germany for examination. Latest results show that the animal was a wildcat.

No previous findings about wildcats had ever been recorded in Tyrol, western Austria, and their existence had been previously ruled out in the Alpine region, although several years earlier sightings of the animal were also reported in the state of Lower Austria.

Despite broad existence of the creature in neighboring Germany, Italy, and Switzerland, it had been considered extinct or lost in Austria since the mid-1950s, said a spokesperson for the Wildcat Platform in Austria. Endi