Super Cats!

By Max Meow, as told to Anne Cissel

Hi, everyone! I’m Max Meow, Cat Crusader. One day, I was hanging out with my pal Mindy in her secret lab, and something INCREDIBLE happened: I got super powers! Now I fly around fighting bad guys in my city, Kittyopolis. There are some wild cats that have real-life super powers. My pal Ranger Rick asked me to come talk to you about these AMAZING furry felines. Let’s check them out!

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This spotted speedster leaves all other land animals in the dust. The cheetah can run twice as fast as the fastest human runner. It can reach a speed of more than 60 miles per hour. That means it could keep up with a car on the highway!

When superheroes—like the Avengers—get together, their powers are unstoppable. Getting a hand (or a paw) from friends always helps me complete my missions, too. The same thing is true for lions. Most wild cats live alone, but lions live together in family groups called prides. The lions’ teamwork helps protect the adult lions and their cubs. Food is a family affair, too. The females do most of the hunting together. Then they share the grub with the others—as you can see in this picture!

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Hellooooo, up there! The snow leopard lives high in snowy, cold mountains in Asia—higher up than any other cat. Those big, wide paws are great for climbing and for walking on snow. And look at its super-long tail! It helps the cat balance when running—and even when peering over steep mountainsides!

Water is kryptonite for house cats, but not the fishing cat. It has no problem diving into water to grab its next meal. Waterproof fur keeps its skin dry. Partly webbed paws act as paddles. And its tail acts as the rudder of a boat, helping the cat turn quickly underwater. In its wetland home in Asia, this animal dives to stay alive!

MEOW-ZA! That bird thought it was safe in the air. Not with the caracal (KAIR-uh-kal) around! This cat can leap 12 feet off the ground—as high as two men standing on top of each other—and catch birds in mid-air. These two caracals are just babies, but they seem well on their way to becoming unbe-LEAP-able hunters!

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No, this photograph isn’t sideways. The margay is one of the only cats that can climb headfirst down a tree with perfect control. It’s one of the best climbers in the cat family. In fact, the margay is more at home in trees than on the ground!

CHOMP! Jaguars have the most powerful jaws of any cat. In this picture, the caiman, a crocodile cousin, is not having a good day. This reptile has bony plates under its very thick skin. But the jaguar’s teeth sink right into it!

Uh-oh. Is this jaguar looking at me? I’m outta here!

Thanks for coming on my super cat adventure! You can join me on more adventures in the Max Meow: Cat Crusader book series, written by Ranger Rick’s Art Director, John Gallagher.

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