Leopard relocated

Yesterday, a male leopard fitted with a tracking collar was released on Mountainlands Nature Reserve  where there is ample prey (See photos below). He comes from a farm in the Schoemanskloof valley and was brought to Mountainlands by Chris Hobkirk and Gait Jan Sterk from the Mpumalanga Tourism and Park Agency (MTPA) game capture and relocation unit.
Once the transport container was opened the leopard darted out and made a quick escape into the grassland. Despite vast habitat and availability of prey, research by carnivore scientists shows a decline in leopard numbers towards the east of Mpumalanga Province and the relocation is an effort to boost population numbers. Certain areas, like Mountainlands, has emerged in studies as areas of core importance for the protection of leopards.

Chris Hobkirk (right)  with the help of Gait Jan Sterk hanged a rope across a branch with which the cage door was pulled opened.

The cage door opens and the leopard can’t wait to get out.

A not too impressed looking leopard darted forward.

What a beautiful animal.

 

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