Henry H. Tryon's
“ F E A R S O M E   C R I T T E R S
( 70th A N N I V E R S A R Y   H Y P E R T E X T   E D I T I O N )



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Ball-tailed cat.
THE BALL-TAILED CAT
Felis candaglobosa

          In the early days this feline undoubtedly enjoyed a much wilder circulation than at present. Recent surveys indicate that it is now pretty well confined to Harney County, Oregon, and Sullivan County, Penslyvania. A fairsized animal of about the dimensions of a wildcat but with a far more agressive disposition.
          Its chief physical characteristic is a hardy heavy, bony ball on the end of its tail. The feet are clawed as with all true cats, making it an excellent climber; and this species has the stealthy habit of lying out on a limb, and when the unsuspecting lumberjack passes beneath, the Cat drops on its victim and pounds him to death with the ball. In the rutting season the male uses this instrument to call the female by drumming on a hollow log.
          This species has occasioned much discussion and peppery argument. It has often been confused with both the Silver Cat and the Dimaul. A careful Study of the equipment and habits of the three species shows plainly that they are, by no means the same. It is quite possible that they are all distantly related; perhaps the Ball-tailed boy ís a less highly developed variant of the same phylum.


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Fearsome Critters, Written by Henry H. Tryon • Illustrated by Margaret R. Tryon
(Cornwall, NY: Idlewild Press, 1939) Original Text and Illustrations Public Domain License.
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