The Leopard

The Leopard - 1
  • Areal: Africa and Asia
  • Habitat: Forests, pastures and mountain regions
  • Food: Carnivorous (elk, deer, etc.)
  • Size: 1 – 2 m
  • Weight: 30kg – 90kg
  • Speed: 45kph (30mph)
  • Colors: black, yellow, brown, gold
  • Reproduction: 3
  • Predators: Tiger and lion
  • He lives: solitary
  • Average age: 10 to 15 years
  • Particularities: thick and long fur, sharp teeth

Origin

The leopard (Panthera Pardus) belongs to the Felidae family and is the smallest member of the four large cats found in the Panthera genus, the other being the tiger, the lion and the jaguar.

It could be found from South and East Asia to South Siberia and Africa, but the spreading area has declined radically due to hunters. At present it can be found mainly in Africa, but there are populations in Sri Lanka, Indochina, Malaysia, Indonesia and China.

The big advantage in wilderness is hunting behavior, adaptability to run at speeds of up to 60km / h, and the unique ability to ride in heavy animal carcass trees. It is also recognized for a good camouflage.

In ancient times, the leopard was considered a hybrid between a lion and a panther, hence its name consisting of Leon (lion) and pardos (panther). The modern scientific name, Panthera Pardus is derived from Latin, is considered to be a compound that means “white-yellow” in Sanskrit.

Leopards occupy the largest area of ​​all wild cats, especially the central and eastern parts of Africa, although the population is on the downward trend. Carl Linnaeus published the leopard description in 1758 and later described 27 leopard subspecies.

Leopard’s Food

Leopards are versatile and opportunistic hunters and have a very large diet. They feed on a greater variety of prey than other members of the species and eat anything, even cockroaches if needed.

Their diet consists mainly of animals with hooves and monkeys. They also often consume rodents, reptiles, amphibians, insects, birds, fish and small predators (foxes, jerseys, jackals, etc.). He was seen attacking the crocodile on land.

Those living in Africa particularly hunt the Impala. 67% of the prey are hoof animals of which 60% are impala, antelope and other animals weighing between 40-60 kg.

The average daily meat consumption is 3.5kg for males and 2.8kg for females. A leopard was seen climbing in a tree with a 125kg antelope. They are capable of hunting animals that weighing more than their weight 2-3 times.

Leopard’s Aspect

Leopards are hunting animals. Though they are smaller than other members of the genre, they can sow large leeches with their massive skulls and strong jaw muscles.

The length of the head and body is between 95 and 165cm, the tail length is 60 to 110cm, and the shoulder height is 45-80cm. Males are approximately 30% larger than females.

Their weight varies between 30 and 90kg, and females between 20-60kg. Males in South Africa are weighing 91kg, and those in Somalia or 23-27kg.

This high weight variation is encountered in different areas and is believed to result from the availability of prey found in each habitat. The biggest leopard registered had 96.5kg. The leopard’s body is relatively long and the legs are short.

The color of the leopard fur is very diverse. Spots of animals in East Africa are circular, while leopards in South Africa and Asia tend to be oval.

Their yellow fur tends towards a pale cream to the desert populations, and gray to the populations at the edge of the forests. In general, the fur of the belly tends to be lighter and more smooth, fluffy.

Leopards can easily be confused with the other two large cats living in Africa: the cheetah and the jaguar.

Leopard’s Behavior

Leopards live mainly in pastureland and forest areas. They meet in savanna and tropical forests. They are said to be adaptable animals that can be found in forests in temperate areas where temperatures reach winter and at -25 degrees.

Leopard is a solitary animal and mostly nocturnal. The level of activity varies depending on the habitat and the type of prey they hunt. It is known for its ability to carat, being often laid and resting on tree branches during the day. They are very good swimmers.

The strongest wild cat is the tiger. It is very agile and can run at speeds up to 60km / h. is capable of jumps of 6m and up to 3m in height.

Scot a series of sounds: mumble, meadow, and more. It is a territorial animal, although it has territories of thousands or hundreds of thousands of km2 where violent fighting between males is needed.

Leopards must compete for food and shelter with other predators such as lions, tigers, hyenas and wild dogs. These animals can easily steal leopard prey or hunt the species, the youngest, especially the chicks if they find them.

The lions also occasionally carve in trees to steal leopards. In the Kalahari desert, if it does not climb the prey quickly into the trees, it must yield to the hyenas. Leopards have an average of 38kg killed prey, which is much lower than the 91kg of tigers.

They have been known throughout history, have been present in art, mythology, folklore in ancient Greece, Persia, Rome and even England.

Leopard’s Reproduction

Depending on the region, leopards can multiply throughout the year. The mating period takes about 46 days and the female is 6-7 days hot. The gestation period lasts for 90-105 days.

Usually 2-4 baby leopards are born. Mortality is estimated at 40-50% in the first year. The pups are born with their eyes closed, they see after 9-10 days. After three months they start to follow their mother’s hunt.

At one year of age they can manage alone but stay with their mother for 18-24 months. Life expectancy is 10 to 15 years. In captivity there were also 21-year-olds.

Crossings between leopards and other members of the genre were supervised, resulting in hybrids. A cross between a lioness and a leopard male is known as leopard.

Leopards were captured in Japan at the end of 1950. Pumapard is a hybrid resulting from a mating between a leopard and a puma.

These hybrids were raised in the late 1890s and early 1900s by Carl Hagenbeck in an animal park in Hamburg, Germany.

 

The Leopard - 2