IUCN Black-footed Cat Distribution Map
Interactive map of the Black-footed Cat's range by the IUCN Red List

Black-footed Cat Distribution in Africa

The Black-footed Cat is endemic to southern Africa and found only in the semi-arid habitats of this region, primarily in just three countries (IUCN 2018):

Southern Africa: Botswana, Namibia, South Africa (marginally in Zimbabwe and southern Angola). *

*The country links will take you to an adventure travel website that has images of the typical natural environment and wildlife habitat of that country.

Black-footed Cat Habitat

The typical habitat of the Black-footed Cat is arid, open savanna or grassland to semi-desert, excluding the driest regions of the deserts.

The IUCN Red List has standardised habitat types globally and the following types are suitable for Black-footed Cats (IUCN 2018):

  • Savanna - Dry
  • Grassland - Subtropical/Tropical Dry
  • Desert - Hot

Black-footed Cat Subspecies

Two subspecies of the Black-footed Cat (Felis nigripes) have been recognized in the past:

1. Felis nigripes nigripes - northern part of range (lighter base colour and markings)

2. Felis nigripes thomasi - southern part of range (darker base colour and markings)

However the current revision of the Felidae cat family suggests there is insufficient variation to substantiate a subspecies division and only the species Felis nigripes is valid.

Black-footed Cat (Felis nigripes) in Dry Grassland Habitat
Black-footed Cat (Felis nigripes) in Dry Grassland Habitat