Leopard (Panthera pardus)
It is considered that the lion is the king of beasts, the tiger is the most dangerous predator, and the most beautiful and cunning cat is the leopard. They have a flexible and very slender body, a rounded head, a large tail and powerful, muscular paws. In length, they reach 180 cm, plus a tail - 100 cm, but the weight does not grow more than 40 kg.
This cat has amazingly yellow eyes. The skin of leopards has a bright color, however, in Far Eastern leopards the color of the coat is dimmer than that of tropical brethren. There are clear dark spots throughout the body. Chest and belly - light or white with a small number of spots. Sometimes there are monochrome leopards and albino cats. The fangs of a leopard are larger than those of other cats in proportion to the size of the body. Sometimes they are even referred to as modern "saber-toothed." Leopards have excellent hearing and sight, and the sense of smell is very weak.
Among all wild cats, leopards are the most common on our planet. They are found in Africa (with the exception of the Sahara), in southern Asia, in the mountains of southwestern and southern Turkmenistan, in southern Tajikistan, in Transcaucasia, in the southern part of Primorye, and its habitat is known in Dagestan. In the Ussuri region is found in the south-west of Primorsky Krai. It keeps in mountainous areas up to an altitude of 300-500 meters above sea level and does not climb higher into the mountains. Leopard prefers quiet places of dwelling. They live in tropical and mixed forests and can approach close to settlements. In the mountain forests of Nepal, South China and Indochina, in Taiwan, Sumatra, Kalimantan there live leopards of a special kind - smoky. They are painted very beautifully: a black marble pattern on a bright yellow or yellow-gray background. Their weight is small - up to 20 kilograms.
Leopards breed all the year round. After 3 months of pregnancy, the female appears 1-2 cubs. They are born spotty and blind. Log they are caves, crevices, pits under the turned roots of trees in a remote, secluded place. A mother of up to 2 years care for offspring. There is also a female with different ages of kittens. The male visits his brood, helps to hunt. At the age of 2-3 years young leopards acquire their families.
Most often, leopards live and hunt alone. The habitats of same-sexed adults do not overlap. But more often leopards do not have routed routes, it appears suddenly here and there. In the daytime the leopard lies on some tree, and with the onset of the night hunting begins. Usually he sits in ambush near the animal path or the nearest pond. Most of its victims are roe deer, antelope, various rodents and lizards. The leopard can hunt monkeys, and attacks them not on the ground, but on trees. The diet of leopards living in Russia includes raccoon dogs, badgers, Manchurian hares and wild boar and spotted deer. Leopard, killing a large antelope, hides the remains of the meal in the fork of the tree, guarding them from voracious hyenas and jackals.
Old leopards who can not hunt wild animals can eat carrion, attack pets or even humans. True, cases with cannibalism among leopards are much less than in tigers and lions. In India, 18 people have been killed by leopards over the past 10 years. This is 2 times less than in lions, and 4 times less than in tigers. But it's worth the cat once to taste human meat, as she realizes that this is an easy prey. In India, in 1976, there were attacks of one leopard-killer, who himself ran into the houses at night and attacked unsuspecting people. This leopard killed 9 people. When he was caught (specially called by the military), it was found that he was very old, his claws were worn out, so the wild boars and roe deer were beyond his power.
But still, cannibalism among leopards is an exception. This wild cat is by nature very cautious, she will avoid the person. But still you have to be very careful, try not to fall into the eye of the leopard and avoid it.