African impala escapes from leopard


This video says about itself:

Impala Miraculously Escapes Jaws Of Leopard – The Hunt – BBC Earth

23 June 2017

With a burst of speed of 65 km an hour, the leopard without doubt is a formidable predator. In this tense and compelling encounter, we stalk quietly alongside a leopard as it sizes up an unsuspecting impala, from the cover of a gully.

African leopards, new study


This 2015 documentary video is about leopards in Africa.

From the University of California – Santa Cruz in the USA:

African leopards revealed: Study documents minute-to-minute behavior of elusive cats

Results illuminate the energetic ‘cost’ of their drive to kill and pave the way for greater understanding of the ecosystem impacts of predation

June 21, 2017

The elusive behavior of the African leopard has been revealed in great detail for the first time as part of a sophisticated study that links the majestic cat’s caloric demands and its drive to kill.

A team led by Chris Wilmers, associate professor of environmental studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz, produced an unprecedented picture of this carnivore’s predatory and reproductive behaviour by outfitting the cats with high-tech wildlife tracking collars equipped with GPS technology and an accelerometer to measure energy output.

“This is the first time we’ve had really detailed energetic data from a wild terrestrial mammal over an extended period,” said Wilmers, lead author of a new paper, “Energetics-informed Behavioral States Reveal the Drive to Kill in African Leopards,” which appears today (June 21, 2017) in the online edition of the journal Ecosphere.

The team gathered data from five animals over two months: one adult male; one adult female with one cub; one adult female without cubs; one yearling male cub; and a young “dispersal-aged” male ready to establish his own territory. “The sample size is small, but we got lucky with the diversity of age and sex,” noted Wilmers.

Information gleaned from the collars allowed Wilmers’ team to match the leopards‘ behavior with time and place, enabling them to assess the energetic “costs” of reproductive behavior — dispersal and territorial patrol for males; parenting for females.

The study revealed that for male African leopards, territorial patrol activities account for 26 percent of their daily caloric intake; for females, parenting a one-year old offspring consumes 8 percent of their calories.

“Energetics is the ultimate currency for an animal’s survival,” said Wilmers. “To survive, an animal needs to balance the calories it’s expending with the calories it’s taking in. If it wants to reproduce, it has to run an energetic surplus.”

Wilmers, a wildlife ecologist who studies animal behavior and its cascading effects on ecosystems, continued: “Based on what the leopards are doing, they run up different energetic budgets, which in turn influence their drive to kill. They might kill more prey, bigger prey, or go after more desirable prey in more dangerous places — closer to humans, for example.”

One of the most striking behaviors described in the study was a kill by the adult male leopard. The data document him approaching a small village in a meandering fashion. He attacks and kills a goat inside a pen, then spends five minutes dragging the goat across the river to a spot where vegetation gives him the cover he needs to begin feeding.

“It gives us incredible insight into their behavior to see where they are moving and what they’re doing on such a fine time scale,” said Wilmers. “This allows us to see these cryptic animals moving through their environment.”

Another example details the behavior of the adult female with a yearling cub. She kills an aardwolf (a small insect-eating [hyena-like] mammal), feeds a bit, then meanders and rests for a few hours until she kills an impala (a medium-sized antelope that is common prey for African leopards). She feeds briefly, then walks directly back to her cub, guiding it first to the aardwolf and then the impala.

Additionally, Wilmers was able to calculate and then compare the energetics of the mother and her son as they traveled together, concluding that the cub expended 12 percent more energy to travel the same distance.

African leopards are among the most elusive mammals on the planet — more so than African lions or cheetahs. “Their whole strategy is to be elusive,” said Wilmers. “People get glimpses of them, but that’s all. Looking at this data is like going on a safari for the first time and seeing an animal you’ve only seen in captivity before.”

These fine-grained energetics data open the door to understanding the ecological consequences of the leopard’s predatory drive. Knowing the African leopard’s energetic needs allows researchers to evaluate where they hunt, what they hunt, and to estimate the level of risk they might be willing to take in pursuit of attractive prey. In combination, these factors have implications for humans and the livestock that often share habitat with African leopards.

The placement of a fence, for example, could have energetic “costs” for leopards if they have to travel farther — expending more energy — to patrol territory, hunt, and provide for their offspring. Those costs would increase their drive to kill. “They might take bigger risks, they might catch larger prey like impala, and that could effect the impala population and what they feed on,” said Wilmers, outlining the “cascade” of ecosystem effects that could follow human changes to the landscape.

“To be able to link behavior to energetics to ecological effects is an important conceptual advance,” said Wilmers. “Once you understand how that circle works, we can assess how our actions will impact the animals, and how those effects will play out on the ecosystem.”

Amur leopard video


This video says about itself:

A Rare Sighting Of The Amur Leopard – Planet EarthBBC Earth

We are treated to intimate footage of the rarest cat on earth, the Amur Leopard. Winter is a difficult time for this hunter – there are no leaves for cover and no young prey animals.

Lion attacks leopard, video


Thisvideo from South Africa says about itself:

19 October 2016

This is the intense moment caught on film of a bold lion sneaking up on an unsuspecting leopard having a nap.

Matthew Poole (26), a professional guide at Kirkman’s Camp in the Sabi Sands, watched this exciting scene play itself out right before him and his excited guests.

“By far the rarest sighting in my guiding career!” Matthew told us.

Matthew continued: “On October 04th 2016, we had started our game drive in search of leopard.

After hearing a male leopard had been found we all got excited and headed into the area.

The male leopard started to walk along the banks of the Sand river scent marking all the way. It was at this moment we noticed the male lion lying in the river on the opposite bank.

I said to my guests ‘Can you imagine if these 2 dominant males came together’. It seemed as if my words weren’t cold because shortly after that the male leopard went to sleep and the lion started to stalk him from the other side of the river.”

Matthew stated that he had mixed emotions as this sighting started to unfold.

There was a lot of excitement and nerves building as the male lion started to stalk from across the Sand River.

As the lion got closer to the leopard, Matthew realized that if he caught the leopard, then he would potentially kill it. “At this point I started to warn my guests about what could happen.” But, before they knew it, the lion was right below the sleeping leopard!

Fortunately, the lion didn’t kill the leopard, but the sneaky lion scared the living daylights out of the leopard.

“The lion drove the leopard into a Leadwood tree on the river bank and then had a drink and moved off out of the area”.

Leopard kills warthog, lion steals it


This video from the Kruger National Park in South Africa says about itself:

23 February 2016

Amazing video of a leopard killing a warthog next to the road when the calls of the dying warthog attracts a nearby lion. Watch what happens next!

South Africa bans leopard hunts due to uncertainty on numbers. Hunters’ association questions government data behind temporary ban on hunting secretive and nocturnal big cats: here.

Leopard trophy hunting ban in South Africa in 2016


This video, recorded in Botswana, says about itself:

14 January 2016

Leopard of Dead Tree Island (National Geographic WILD)

From Wildlife Extra:

South Africa bans leopard trophy hunting for 2016

Cape Town – The Department of Environmental Affairs has set provincial leopard trophy hunting quotas at zero for 2016, effectively banning leopard trophy hunting throughout South Africa for a year.

This follows an alert by SA’s Scientific Authority that the number of leopards in the country was unknown and that trophy hunting posed a high risk to the survival of the species, Conservation Action Trust has said.

Under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), South Africa is permitted to allocate 150 leopard trophy export permits a year. Early warning of possible permit curtailment appeared in the Government Gazette late last year indicating that if the guidelines issued earlier in the year were not adhered to, provincial quotas would be set to zero for 2016.

Lion trophy hunting across the world was also restricted in December last year with the US decided to extend their Endangered Species Act protections for two breeds of lions. Though this move did not make it illegal for hunters to hunt lions, hunters now have to go through a lot more work to take the animal trophies back to the United States.

Commenting on the Government Gazette notice on the leopards, Guy Balme of the environmental NGO Panthera says, “It seems prudent that hunting should only continue once the appropriate measures are in place. Only then can we be confident that the practice is sustainable and not putting additional pressure on leopard populations already under a great deal of strain from other threats.”

The DHA listed threats to leopards as excessive legal and illegal shooting of ‘damage-causing animals,’ poorly managed trophy hunting, illegal trade in leopard skins for cultural and religious attire and generally poor monitoring of hunts and permit allocation.

The Research Authority found that leopards:

– Had a low reproductive rate;
– Their distribution was fragmented;
– Their abundance and population trend was uncertain;
– Illegal off-take was uncertain;
– There was little control of harvesting (especially illegal harvesting) which was high;
– Confidence in harvest management and monitoring was low;
– Incentives for conservation in the country were low; and
– Only between 5% and 15% of leopard habitat was strictly protected.

The trophy ban is in place throughout this year. According to the DEA statement, the Scientific Authority will then review the situation. It will also develop norms and standards for the management and monitoring of leopard hunting throughout the country.

Kelly Marnewick, the Environmental Wildlife Trust’s carnivore conservation manager, supported the ban.

“It’s important to ensure that any wildlife trade we do is sustainable,” she said. “If we can’t do that, it’s highly problematic. We need a trade ban until we can get to that.”

“Record keeping on trophy hunting in this country is shocking. We haven’t been recording age, sex or size of trophies. If our hunting fraternity is serious about using wildlife sustainably they will embrace this ban and find ways to work with government until trade is sustainable.”

Helen Turnbull of the Cape Leopard Trust also supported the move. She said the trust was pleased to see that common sense has prevailed and that the government would maintain the ban until provinces have gotten their acts together.

Andrew Muir of the Wilderness Foundation said the ban was good news, but noted that it was an interim measure while norms and standards were being put in place.

“We cannot stress enough the need for high quality research on the population numbers, make-up and distribution of leopards, especially in core conservation areas,” he said. “Leopards are charismatic and an apex species. Until we know population numbers and carrying capacity we should not hunt them.”