BBC Quiz: Can you tell a wild cat from a housecat?

So, if you have a few minutes, the BBC has a 16-question quiz designed to see if you can tell house cats from wildcats by their appearance. Greg Mayer, who found this, called it to my attention and then boasted:

I got 15 of 17 correct, after correcting one of their IDs (tame hybrids don’t count as house cats in my book).

I’m a bit baffled, as there are only 16 cats shown!

So, keeping in mind Greg’s caveat, take the quiz by clicking on the screenshot below. There are no answers to click on, so get a pen and paper, make a column of numbers from 1 to 16, and then write either “w” (wild) or “h” (house) next to each. The answers and IDs are at the end of the quiz.


Screen Shot 2016-08-31 at 7.17.39 AM

Be sure to read the identification notes in the answers; you’ll learn something.

My own score was 14/16; I missed two, undoubtedly including the one that Greg missed. As the Angry Cat Man, I should have scored 100%.


  1. Posted August 31, 2016 at 8:46 am | Permalink

    I thought it said somewhere in the article there were 17 pictures, and I just counted up the wrong answers. So my score should be 14/16.

    • Posted August 31, 2016 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

      Since housecats are directly descended from wild cats, how much difference is there?

  2. Ken Elliott
    Posted August 31, 2016 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    I missed three, which wasn’t as bad as I was expecting.

  3. Jonathan Wallace
    Posted August 31, 2016 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    12/16. Not unhappy with that!

  4. Kevin
    Posted August 31, 2016 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    12/16. That’s pretty good for me. I encourage others to watch PBSkids ( and PBS:Nature which probably doubled my correct score.

  5. nicky
    Posted August 31, 2016 at 10:35 am | Permalink

    I got 4 wrong, which makes it 12/16 too.

  6. Posted August 31, 2016 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    13/16 not too bad. That was a fun quiz.

  7. Posted August 31, 2016 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    7 / 16. Boy I suck. Mind you I have not lived with a cat for many years for now and have never been “into” cats.

  8. µ
    Posted August 31, 2016 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    The 17th cat is Schroedinger’s cat.
    It will appear in the article once you interact with it.

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted August 31, 2016 at 6:59 pm | Permalink


      10/10 for that.


  9. Steve Brooks
    Posted August 31, 2016 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    11/16. I thought that I would get a better score, but it wasn’t to be.

  10. Q-Tim
    Posted August 31, 2016 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

    13/16, not bad…

  11. W.Benson
    Posted August 31, 2016 at 7:51 pm | Permalink

    13 of 16, but was working with a team.

  12. Christopher
    Posted August 31, 2016 at 8:06 pm | Permalink

    I missed two as well. The Somali, letter L, was the one I waffled on a bit, and then got wrong. The first one I should have known, but I rushed. Still, not bad since I don’t know a great deal about wildcats, but of course everything I know I’ve learned here from Professor Ceiling Cat.

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