Black Leopard Spotted In Kenya

14 February, 2019, 08:13 | Author: Emmett Rice
  • Melanistic leopard

"Collectively, these are the first confirmed images in almost 100 years of a black leopard in Africa", said Nicholas Pilfold of the San Diego team, also lead researcher for a leopard conservation program in Laikipia County.

The pictures are the first of a black leopard in Africa in nearly 100 years.

"We are very excited to hear that these camera traps have captured rare footage of melanistic leopards, otherwise known as black panthers", the conservation group announced.

He said he left his cameras outside for several nights.

"I had a quick look at the last trap, not expecting to find much", he wrote on his blog.

While the term black panther is a versatile phrase encompassing a number of big cats, it is most commonly used to describe melanistic, or black cats, also known as black leopards.

However, the Daily Nation, a Kenyan newspaper, challenged that claim on Wednesday, saying one of its photographers had succeeded in photographing a black leopard in 2013.

The Brit said he couldn't believe it when he returned to one of the traps one day and saw a black leopard staring back at the camera lens.

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A photo of a rare "black panther" has gone viral and it's really wonderful.

Other people had clearly seen black leopards in the area.

Pilfold is part of a team from the San Diego Zoo working with local partners, including the Kenya Wildlife Service, to monitor leopard populations in the area and help preserve the species. And on the fourth night, he was able to snap high-quality photos of a black leopard - a sight he couldn't believe that he caught with his cameras.

The leopard is melanistic, a rare genetic mutation that causes it to sometimes appear completely black.

Black leopards are usually associated with dense forests, where their coats make them hard to spot.

Nick Pilfold, a global conservation scientist with the San Diego Zoo, said that he and his team captured footage of the animal at Laikipia Wilderness Camp in Laikipia County, Kenya, according to CNN. "For many years, they remained the stuff of dreams and of farfetched stories told around the campfire at night".

"Black panthers are iconic creatures and yet very few images of wild black panthers exist", said Mr Burrard-Lucas. Black leopards are actually a type of black panther - made famous by the Marvel Comics character of that name.

Kenyan conservationist Paula Kahumbu said there have been many unconfirmed sightings of black leopards, but this is the first time one has been proven.

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