The element of surprise is the most crucial component for the success of a leopard. With a coat of complex patterning that breaks up the shape of the body, these magnificent cats can melt into their environment without being detected. The level of patience that an experience leopard brings fourth is something to write home about!
During my time at Tintswalo safari lodge I’ve had the priviledge of watching these phenomenal animals rest on top of termite mounds watching their potential prey in the distance, planning, calculating their approach to the finest detail and then executing what they’ve planned. These ultimate opportunists won’t let a good hunting opportunity pass them by even in daytime.
Rhulani, one of our collard dominant males in the central Northern Manyeleti Game Reserve. Also known for being a warthog specialist, will move from termite mound too termite mound checking the Aardvark burrows for any occupants. If he is lucky and finds an active burrow he will wait patiently a few meters from the hole to see if the victim appears. In the video clip he did exactly that. The warthog eventually burst out of the hole he was in, and ran for his life!
Leopards can cover an astonishing 24m per second in a short burst of speed when charging or attacking a potential threat of some sort. Undoubtedly making them one of the most devastating predators on the planet. With their powerful bodies combined with the fore-claws they will seize their prey with probably one of the most accurate bites to the neck or the back of the head in the animal kingdom. Pound for pound they are one of the strongest cat that exists! But even with all these skills and power they will hunt successfully only 30-40% of the time. As you will see in the clip, they can and will sometimes miss.