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There are plenty of activity options opened for you within the Indian Wild life Sanctuaries and they are not just restricted to watching the animals and birds.
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Home >> Wild Animals in India >> Leopard

Leopard

The Leopard is a striking looking feline. One of the Big Cats, the Leopard with its golden yellow coat marked with rosettes, is a compact hunting machine. Leopards are also called Panthers and the rare Black Panther, a leopard with a completely black coat, is also seen in India. Black Panthers have been immortalized as Bagheera the Black Panther in Rudyard Kipling's well loved children's classic The Jungle Book.

Zoological name

Panthera pardus

Range

Leopards are found in densely forested areas of India including many National Parks and wildlife sanctuaries. Across the world, leopards have the widest distribution of any of the Big Cats and are found in Africa, Asia Minor and the Middle East, across south East Asia, including Sri Lanka and Java and further North in China and Russia.

Estimated population

It is estimated that there are around 14,000 leopards in India. Worldwide the population of leopards is estimated to be around 100,000 with the majority of leopards found in Africa.

Physical characteristics

Leopards grow to be 5 to 8 feet long and can weigh from 60 to 210 pounds. The leopard has a compact body covered with rosette shaped marks and a thick tail. The coat of a leopard can vary in color from yellow to reddish brown. In South Asia Black Panthers are often seen. The coat of the panther is completely black due a genetic difference. Often some of cubs in one litter can be all lack while others have the normal color of leopards. The white tip of the leopards tail is held upright by mother leopards while walking through dense undergrowth. This helps to guide their cubs and ensure that they follow her.

Habitat

Leopards are found in thick forests, mountainous terrain, open grasslands and even in dry scrub jungle. Leopards can adapt to varied environments and this has helped it survive where many other Big Cats have been severely affected by habitat destruction. Leopards prefer forest boundary areas, where they can observe their prey from the trees and emerge for the kill, only to retreat with their prey back to the safety of the tree line.

Diet

Leopards are carnivores and hunt for prey. They eat anything from large insects and rodents to wild boar, wild fowl, and the young of buffalo, Gaur and - in areas of human encroachment - domestic cattle and dogs. Their strength and agility allow Leopards to drag their prey up into the trees and keep it safe from scavengers. Leopards therefore are more successful predators than Cheetahs, with whom they share a habitat in parts of Africa, since Cheetahs often lose their prey to scavengers such as Lions or Hyenas.

Behavior

Leopards are solitary carnivores. A breeding pair may be seen together briefly. The mother leopard brings up cubs on her own. Cubs remain with their mother for up to two years after which they are old enough to fend for themselves. Leopards can live for up to 20 years in the wild. In zoos leopards have been known to live for over 25 years. Leopards have been known to turn man-eater as a result of injury that prevents them from hunting or old age. A famous example is the Man Eating Leopard of Rudraprayag, which was shot by the hunter and naturalist Jim Corbett, after whom the Corbett National Park is named.

Status

The loss of habitat as well as human population pressure on wildlife reserves in India is a matter of concern for leopard populations in India. There have been a number of incidents in recent years where leopards have entered Indian cities from nearby wildlife sanctuaries.

Tourists can see Leopards in most of the large national parks in India except in dry desert or cold high altitude areas on India wildlife tours.


Wild Animals in India

Royal Bengal Tiger - Great Indian Rhinoceros - Indian Elephant - Leopard - Asiatic Lion - Barasingha - Gaur (Indian Bison) - Ganges River Dolphin


South India Tours
Wildlife in Kerala


Wildlife in Rajasthan
More Tour Packages India

 
Wildlife Sanctuaries in IndiaWildlife Sanctuaries in India

Wildlife Sanctuaries in India

Bharatpur Wildlife Sanctuary - Corbett National Park & Sanctuary - Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary - Gir National Park & Sanctuary - Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary - Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary - Thattekad Bird Sanctuary - Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary - Kolleru Bird Sanctuary - Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary - Karnala Bird Sanctuary - Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary - The Palamau Tiger Reserve

 

India Birding Tour Packages

Rajasthan Wildlife & Birding Tour - Desert & Birding Tour - Golden Triangle Birds Tour
Special Birding Tour with Ornithologist - North-East India Birding Tour
Birding Tour India - Bird Watcher's Heaven

Tiger Tours India

Tigerland Safari - Footprints of Tiger - Essence of India with Tiger Tour
Best of India with Tigers Tour - Tiger Special Tours - Grand Tour of Tigerland
Central India Tours with Tigers

Wildlife Safaris in India
Wildlife Safaris in India

Lion Safari - Jeep Safari
Elephant Safari - Camel Safari


Bengal Tiger


Bengal Tiger

The natural heritage in India is as rich and diverse as the cultural heritage. The wildlife sanctuaries and the national parks here give you an essence of the same. Nestled in this rich land is the Royal Bengal Tiger, the only home to the Royal Tiger Cat.

 
Wild Animals in IndiaWild Animals in India


Wild Animals in India

Royal Bengal Tiger - Great Indian Rhinoceros - Indian Elephant - Leopard - Asiatic Lion - Barasingha - Gaur (Indian Bison) - Ganges River Dolphin

 
Glimpses of India Glimpses of India


Glimpses of India

Indian Forests - Eastern Habitats - Himalayan Wilderness - Southern India Jungles - Wild West India - Wildlife Trails
Wildlife Tours in India - Wildlife National Parks India - Wildlife Sanctuaries in India - Wildlife Safaris in India - Bengal Tiger - Wild Animals in India
India Birding Tour Packages - Tiger Tours India - Glimpses of India

 
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