Nature is an amazing place for fresh air and sunshine. Nature is also great for your mental health as being in it reduces stress and anger. But, did you know that nature is also a major source of cuteness?

Yes, forests, jungles, deserts, and a number of other natural locations are home to millions of cute animals—koalas, llamas, alpacas, possums, spooders, slow lorises, polar foxes, harp seals, and a myriad more. In this list is, of course, the rusty-spotted cat, which is incidentally also the smallest wild cat on the planet.

Meet the smallest feline species on the planet—the rusty-spotted cat

Image credits: BBC

BBC has recently come out with a preview of its latest episode of Big Cats. It features a near-adult rusty-spotted cat that lives in the wilds of Sri Lanka. The feline is seen roaming the woods and jumping over water, searching for food and exploring the premises. And it’s adorable!

Image credits: BBC

The rusty-spotted cat (prionailurus rubiginosus) is a wild species of felines living in the forests of Sri Lanka and much of India, with sporadic sightings in Terai and Nepal.

Measuring at 35-48cm in body length, the adorable wild cat can easily fit into human palms

Image credits: BBC

These tiny critters are predominantly nocturnal, though they do come out briefly during daylight. However, their activity during daytime is rather limited. rusty-spotted cats are often found hiding in trees and caves so as to avoid larger predators in the area.

Image credits: BBC

Rodents and birds are, as you may have expected, their main course when it comes to meals. However, if need be, they also dart towards other small prey like lizards, frogs, and insects.

Rusty-spotted cats can be found throughout Sri Lanka & India

Image credits: BBC

Much of the rusty-spotted cat’s cuteness comes from its coat and size. The species are often described as a smaller version of a leopard, sporting a rust-colored coat and less, but still present, spots. The average rusty-spotted cat measures at around 35–48cm in body length as well as another 15–30cm of tail length. It could very easily fit into your hands if it was to curl up.

Image credits: BBC

Like the American bison, the black capuchin, the red-fronted lemur, and a number of other wild animals, the rusty-spotted cat is also on the list of near threatened species. The main cause is that its natural habitat, the deciduous forests, are on the decline due to cultivation and natural loss.

Unfortunately, the rusty-spotted cat is also on the list of near threatened species

Image credits: BBC

Before you go wondering well, who’s the second smallest feline in the world? It’s the black-footed cat. Even though it’s not the smallest, it is attributed the title of deadliest cat on earth because of its ability to bring down more prey than any other feline. Also adorably tiny, also up there with all of the cute animals.

Here’s a video of the rusty-spotted cat roaming wild in its natural habitat