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Leopard Mystery Project

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The Shayamanzi leopard project

26 September 2013

The core of our project is trying to understand the secrets and mystery of the leopard, as reflected in its beautiful, yellow eyes. Only then will campaigns such as Awareness and Save a leopard have any sense. How do you make someone aware of something you don’t fully understand or know yourself? Even South Africans don’t always know the difference between a leopard and a cheetah. Shayamanzi uses ±15 static still cameras and ±25 video cameras 24 hours (infrared and heat technology) to watch the bushveld. Prof J du P Bothma helps us to interpret the video images. Our unmanned video cameras are controlled via internet, hundreds of kilometres removed from the bushveld, enabling filming and interpreting from a distance. Shayamanzi originated 24 years ago, while the leopard project started 12 years ago. The project is divided into four main phases:

  1. Leopard Kingdom – Behaviour of leopards which are fed in 1 ha camps.
  2. Leopard Freedom – Behaviour of leopards in a 10 ha camp, which also contains other game.
  3. Leopard Network – The movement of wild free roaming leopards at Shayamanzi.
  4. Leopard Wild – The movement of leopards that were released at Shayamanzi after being provided with a GPS collar.

Read more about the leopard’s characteristics from Prof Bothma under item Description: The Leopard.

 

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