SECRETS OF INDIAN LEOPARD or PANTHER
LEOPARD or PANTHER : [Panthera Pardus] The sleek body and color that perfectly blends with its surrounding make the leopard probably the most successful modern predator. In India, it is the third largest cat whose range occurs almost through the entire country. It is also known as the panther and is often confused with the (now extinct) cheetah. The only other similar animal is the jaguar found in South America.
Behaviour : Leopard eats anything they can kill from crabs to large cattle. Instances of feeding on carrion are also known. Monkeys and domestic dogs are a favorite food. It often carries its prey up a tree to store probably to prevent other stronger predators from appropriating the kill. Apart from man, the natural aeries of a leopard are other ‘carnivorous’ such as the tiger, wild dogs and hyenas.
Family : Leopards are territorial and solitary. It is during the breeding season that a pair will come together. The pair stays together up to and after the cubs that are usually, 2-4 in number is born. The questation period is slightly over these months.
Facts : These races occur in India. They have a considerable degree of color variation. Animals from the desert zone are paler, while in high rainfall areas of the Western Ghats and eastern India, black leopard are not uncommon. The most successful and adaptive among the large cats, the leopard live in all types of habitats from open country to thick forest. Leopard will usually avoid confrontations with a tiger or a lion as the latter are bigger and stronger. In addition, have different habits and prey preferences even if both species shared the same area.
SNOW LEOPARD : [Panthera Unicia] This gray ghost of the snowy mountains is found along the length and breath of the Himalayas Kashmir to Arunachal pradesh. An exclusively high altitude leopard, it rarely descends below 2,130 m in winter, and in summer frequents the fringes of the snow line-its movements of the natural prey, wild goat and sheep. The breeding season is in the spring season. Gestation period is about three months. Two to 4 young are born at a time.