According to journalist Andy Corbley and the Good News Network (GNN), "A DNA analysis confirmed that the rare and little-known Pallas’ cat lives on the body of Mount Everest—three miles above sea level.
"The discovery was made along Sagarmatha National Park on Mount Everest’s Southern Flank in Nepal after a month-long expedition collecting environmental samples.
"Scat recovered from the two separate sites located 3.7 miles apart at 16,765 and 17,027 feet (5,110 and 5,190 meters) above sea level confirmed there were Pallas cats in the area.
"Known as the “original grumpy cat” before the famous internet meme cat was born, Otocolobus manul or Pallas’ cat stands among the most charismatic and unique wild Felidae on Earth. This mountain specialist is found at high elevations across Asia and is a super predator of small mammals.
"Indeed the analysis of the animal’s scat showed the feline was feeding on pika and mountain weasel, which delighted the scientists as these were also unknown in the national park which is a UNESCO Natural Heritage site," Corbley reported.
“It is phenomenal to discover proof of this rare and remarkable species at the top of the world,” said Dr. Tracie Seimon, of Wildlife Conservation Society’s Zoological Health Program, and leader of the expedition which occurred in 2019.
“The nearly four-week journey was extremely rewarding not just for our team but for the larger scientific community. The discovery of Pallas’s cat on Everest illuminates the rich biodiversity of this remote high-alpine ecosystem and extends the known range of this species to eastern Nepal.”
For more information about the "Original Grumpy Cat" discovery, click here.
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