Sri Lanka leopard
Sri Lanka leopard Panthera pardus kotiya (EEP)
Weight♂ 55kg, ♀ 30kg
Life-spanup to 20 years in zoos
carnivorous (deer, buffalo, porcupines…)
Leopards are renowned for their ability to blend into their surroundings. Solitary creatures, they continually mark their territory in order to keep other leopards away. They are excellent climbers, able to hoist prey more than twice their own weight into a tree.
Females stay with their young for their first few days of life but have to go out hunting before long. They leave them hidden in dense vegetation, cracks in rocks or hollow trees but change their hiding place regularly as they are extremely vulnerable to predators when she is away.
The young acquire independence at about the age of one year. Males head off to conquer a new territory, whereas females remain close to their birthplace, sometimes encroaching on their mother’s territory.
Of the 9 leopard sub-species, the most endangered are those in Asia, who are victims of deforestation and being hunted for their skin. Their bones are also used in traditional Asian medicine instead of those of tigers, which have become too rare.