Habitat Suitability Modelling for Feline Species in Jordan: A tool for Climate-Responsive Conservation Planning


  • Ehab Eid IUCN SSC Steering Committee member. Lutfi Queder Street. Al Yadodah. 11610 Amman. Jordan.
  • Alaaeldin Soultan Department of Ecology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. Box 7044, 750 07 Uppsala, Sweden
  • Husam Elalqamy Ministry of Forests Land, Natural Resources Operations and Rural Development FLNRORD, Prince George, British Columbia, Canada




Caracal caracal, Felis chaus, Felis margarita, Felis silvestris, Habitat suitability, Jordan


Three of the four known feline species in Jordan are categorized as critically endangered, according to the latest Red List assessment of mammals in Jordan, of which caracal: Caracal caracal, sand cat Felis margarita, and jungle cat Felis chaus. The fourth species, discussed within this paper – the wild cat Felis silvestris, is a species of least concern. Human activities such as hunting, poisoning, habitat destruction, and fragmentation are among the pressures seriously affecting the small and restricted populations of critically endangered felines. This study is the first to provide predictions on habitat suitability for the four species based on the two Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs), predictions of how greenhouse gas concentration in the atmosphere, of 2.6 (representing “very stringent” corrections to the number of greenhouse gases accumulating in the atmosphere) and 8.5 (the “business-as-usual” or also known as the “worst-case scenario”). Results showed an alarming decline in suitable habitats for all species. The sand cat is predicted to lose its entire suitable habitats in 2050 and 2070 according to RCP 8.5, while both the caracal and jungle cat are to face the very precarious pressure of declined areas of suitable habitat. Jordan’s network of protected areas was deemed inadequate, according to this study, to protect the feline species and maintain their population. As potential solutions to counter the combined anticipated impacts occurring from both human activities and anticipated climate forecasts, it is necessary to strengthen the enforcement of environmental policies intended to protect reserves and natural areas, strengthen ex-situ conservation measures, minimize human pressures, to cope with the predicted habitats loss in the future, and to review the current network of protected areas.


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How to Cite

Eid, E. ., Soultan, A. ., & Elalqamy, H. . (2022). Habitat Suitability Modelling for Feline Species in Jordan: A tool for Climate-Responsive Conservation Planning . Journal of Wildlife and Biodiversity, 6(3), 26–53. https://doi.org/10.22120/jwb.2022.290322.1452