• Stéphanie Périquet

Spotted cats on a full moon night

August full moon nocturnal monitoring was filled with sightings of our most secretive big cat. It started with 2 leopards were observed mating. Corne Cocklin managed to get a few pictures of the male and when we compared his rosette patterns to those known individuals, we were delighted to find out that he was the very same male we collared in 2013. So not only is he still alive, which would put him at about 8-10 years old, but he is strong and fit and holding a territory. Now this is what could call a resident leopard on Ongava And because just seeing mating leopard was not enough, we witnessed one of these spotted cat killing a duiker from the underground hide at Anderssons waterhole. We heard running and commotion, followed by duiker distress call and a leopard grunt. When the cloud of dust dissipated, the leopard was sitting next to its dead prey before it dragged it away in search of a safe place to eat in peace.. While sitting at waterholes can be quite boring at times with nothing happening for hours, these kind of observations definitely make it all worth it!