Iriomote's yamaneko wildcat

Iriomote's yamaneko wildcat

Japan's Loch Ness monster? See if you can spot the illusive Iriomote wildcat!

While you're exploring Iriomote Island, be sure to keep your eyes peeled for the yamaneko, an elusive wildcat which was discovered in 1965 and can only be found on Iriomote. Related to the leopard, it's only the size of a domesticated house cat and a nocturnal animal, most active around twilight. The cats are terrestrial, but can climb trees and also swim. During the day they sleep in caves or tree hollows. Sadly the yamaneko is an endangered species and there are thought to be just a hundred cats left on the island. So it's very unlikely that you'll spot one, but please let us know if you do!

Iriomote's yamaneko wildcat

located in Iriomote

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Interested in this Experience? It is included in this tour:

  • This 12-night superior island-hopping itinerary introduces Japan's subtropical side in style, with superb accommodation and fine dining included.

    Japan Island-Hopping

    With white sandy beaches, clear blue seas, dense jungle, rare wildlife and warm, laid-back inhabitants – this really is an island paradise. This itinerary gives you the chance to explore Okinawa's wealth of natural beauty and unique culture by hopping between the islands of “Japan's Hawaii”

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    This 12-night superior island-hopping itinerary introduces Japan's subtropical side in style, with superb accommodation and fine dining included.

Other Wildlife experiences

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  • Red-crowned cranes

    Red-crowned cranes

    Observe the amazing spectacle that is the annual red-crowned crane mating dance.

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  • Steller's sea eagles

    Steller's sea eagles

    Take a small ice breaker cruise into the ice flows of the Nemuro Straits to photograph Steller's sea eagles fishing for Pacific cod.

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