International Leopard Day. I celebrate in Sabi Sands.

"You can't get a leopard to change his spots. In fact, now that I come to think of it, you can't really get a leopard to appreciate the notion that it has spots. You can explain it carefully to the leopard, but it will just sit there looking at you, knowing that you are made of meat. After a while it will perhaps kill you". Geoffrey K. Pullum



Mat 3rd was International Leopard Day. In celebration, I thought that I would share some of my favourite leopard images with you. Most, if not all, were taken on trips to various lodges in the Sabi Sands.



“MINE”…I remember this encounter well as we were at the end of an evening drive and on our way back to the lodge when we came across this.



A first for both me and this young female. I had never witnessed mating leopards before and although this male was experienced, our guide told us that it was the first mating for the female.



A moment of early morning madness?



Leopards have a high mortality rate amongst their cubs. Often a female will give birth to two or possibly three cubs, often only one survives to adulthood. We were driving along a dry river bed, looked up, and saw this family looking down at us. I wonder if they are still alive?



The late afternoon sun casts light on the eye of this predator as it strode past our vehicle on the way to a nearby waterhole.



Time to relax…



From way up north in the Sabi Sands, I spent a long time just sitting and watching this youngster watching me…



Mom and young cub. The survivor of a pair where one has already vanished. Leopards in Sabi Sands and only named after they have survived for 2 years. Anything under that age die nameless, which I feel is so sad…



Looking down on the world… Near enough to Mom, but not within her line of sight.



And Mom was rightly perturbed and was calling softly but plaintively until her calls were answered and she visibly relaxed, knowing that her cub was safe from the large male that was not too far away.



Lord/lady of all I survey! With thanks to all the lodges, guides, and, of course, leopards, who made these experiences memorable for so many reasons.





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