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October 2013 Wildland article

21 January 2014

 

...(Read Part 2 of Ziana the female leopard at Shayamanzi)


Leopard mystery project
SHAYAMANZI
Jannie Parsons
Female leopard spares my life

Part 1 of 2: Yes, it sounds like an angler’s story after too much red wine. Another leopard mystery happens on top of the mountains near Leopard Castle at Shayamanzi.
A magazine editor is on her way to Shayamanzi to do an article on our leopard project and unmanned internet cameras. The same day is feeding time for the leopards – each in a 1 ha camp. The meat is taken out early to thaw and put in a bucket on the walkway ± 5 metres above the camps. The lever that regulates the electricity on the wire is for an unknown reason in the off position in camp 2 ­ Ziana, the female leopard’s camp is off. In the meantime it gets hotter, the meat thaws in the black bucket and the mountain wind blows the smell of blood across the camps.
Late in the afternoon, I, my magazine guest and my staff start with a visit to the leopard camps. I am awe-struck and freeze in my tracks… Ziana, the female leopard isn’t in her camp but is standing on the same walkway as us, less than 30 metres further on.

 

She has a piece of meat in her mouth and watches us closely… Will she storm or will she run away with her and watches us closely… Will she storm or will she run away with her piece meat?
She turns around and runs down the 5 metres of steps into a passage in the camps. Cautious and slowly I get the group outside of the camps and jog past the steps she had used to get hold of the bucket with meat in order to attract her back to her camp. She watched me from between the grass and... (Become a subscriber for more)www.leopard.tv

 

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