Indian leopards and humans, new research


This video fom India is called Human & Leopard ~ A Conflict – part01.

From Wildlife Extra:

Leopards live closer to people than previously thought

In a bid to understand how leopards relate to humans and adapt to their presence five leopards (two males and three females) that have been residing in human-dominated areas in India and perceived as ‘problem animals’, have been radio-collared. Two were released more than 50 km (31 miles) away from the site of capture, while the remaining three were released near the site of capture.

The scientists monitored the animals’ activities, for up to a year post-release, recording their behaviour and the strategies they adopt to avoid direct contact with people.

They found immediately after release, the two translocated animals moved 89 km (55 miles) and 45 km respectively (28 miles) away from the release sites and applied tactics to avoid encountering people, despite dependence on their resources, the scientists found.

This included mostly moving at night, when they also would often venture within 25 metres of people’s homes.

“This gave them an access to people’s livestock, and yet kept them safe from people,” said co-author Vidya Athreya of WCS India.

The two translocated animals occupied bigger home ranges (42 km [26 miles]and 65 km [40 miles] respectively), including one in the outskirts of Mumbai. The other three lived in areas with highest human densities, but occupied smallest home ranges (8-15 sq km) (3-5.7 square miles) ever recorded for leopards anywhere.

“The home ranges of the three animals are comparable to those in highly-productive protected areas with a very good prey density,” said Athreya. “This indicated that food sources associated with humans [domestic animals] supported these leopards.”

The scientists believe from the evidence that leopards in human areas are not always stray or victims of conflict like previously thought bat rather resident animals, potentially requiring policy makers to rethink India’s leopard-management strategies. Moreover, two of the females even gave birth to cubs during the course of the study, confirming their residence.

Despite living in close proximity to humans and even being dependent on their resources, none of the leopards were involved in human deaths during capture or following release.

3 thoughts on “Indian leopards and humans, new research

  1. Pingback: Thirsty Indian leopard gets head stuck in pot | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: Dead zebra scares leopard | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: Sri Lankan tea plantation workers speak on bad conditions | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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