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Leopard Characters

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Zaza - Introduction

23 November 2012

The more than 20 leopards we have dealt with at Shayamanzi since 2001 were all very special. Shayamanzi’s theme song The eyes of secret, written by Rudi Claase, is dedicated to all Shayamanzi’s leopards, those in the camps, the wild leopards on the farm and all the leopards that have been let free at Shayamanzi and left the farm into the Waterberg.

Each leopard that we have handled has rendered a contribution towards unravelling the mystery surrounding leopards. Zaza and her sister Ziana arrived at Shayamanzi in March 2007. Both sisters were approximately 11 years old. They weren´t tame enough for one to enter their camp, but they weren´t shy of people either. Since March 2007 there have been many pleasant, sad, beautiful, angry, anxious, worried, interesting, day, night, summer, winter, romantic, moody film star moments and incidents that will in time be described under Leopard characters.

The pairing session of Zaza and Ziana with Zoy, and the events with Zaza afterwards were just as beautiful, unique and sad so that we decided to use her as our first character. The Zaza song is dedicated to her and we believe and trust that this song will have an awareness creating effect worldwide of the survival crises that these endangered cats face. The music video shows a beautiful and romantic part of leopards that is seldom seen or filmed. The urgency accompanying their pairing sessions is almost as if the females want to show the world that their survival as a species is in danger. With their body language (dance) they ask and plead, not only for the male’s attention and action, but for all humanity to acknowledge them and to judge them on facts and not on perceptions.

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Name and gender

www.leopard.tvZaza is a female leopard. The previous owner of the leopards had named her Anna, but we renamed her after deciding to give all the leopards that we handled names starting with Z.

 

Background

Zaza and her sister Ziana arrived at Shayamanzi together after I had been approached by Deon Celliers, formerly of De Wildt Cheetah, with a request to provide the two leopards with a home until they died. The farm on which they had grown up without a mother had been sold and the permits would not be transferred.

 

Date of arrival

Zaza and her sister arrived at Shayamanzi on 4 March 2007, when they were approximately 11½ years old. In the wild, a leopard’s life expectancy is about 12-15 years, but if the conditions are favourable, they can live to the age of 20 in captivity.

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