Leopards have been spotted at quite a few places in the Abode of the Gods in the last two months, there have been accounts of it been seen at Kumarwada, the Dhondai area where a few stray dogs have been picked up.The leopard a fortnight ago attacked a young calf in the Salgoan area but it was able to survive. The latest leopard recorded and seen was at the back of the Brother’s quarters at St.Mary’s School.
The leopard is one of the smallest of the big cats and known for its ability to adapt to a variety of habitats.A nocturnal animal, The leopard hunts by night. It feeds on the smaller species of herbivores found in its range, such as the langur, wild hare, and wild boar. It is famous for picking up pariah dogs around forest areas and our small town, they are also known to prey on resident Abuites pet dogs who stray out of their protected enclosure. An extremely agile creature, it spends most of its resting time in natural caves and on top of trees. They can move quite a few kilometers every night in search of prey.
Leopards usually mate throughout the year, drawing up a litter of two to three cubs after a gestation period of 90 to 105 days. The female is very protective of her cubs and keeps them well hidden from preying predators. They stay with the mother for another two years, learning to hunt by following and watching the mother.
The biggest threats facing the common leopard in India are poaching for illegal trade in body parts and loss of habitat. I fear for the leopards of Abu as the previous year two-foot traps had been retrieved from the jungle behind the school in the vicinity of the Golden Horn.
Photo n Article by: Ains Priesty