Sometimes the world just lines up and you feel the urge to write one of those irritating, “oh, lucky me” blogs.
But I’m writing an article on wildcats in the city – and no it’s not about ladies out on the tear. It’s about leopards and caracal cats that inhabit the suburbs and city bowl. Imagine sharing your city with a leopard. One of the cool features of Cape Town. Although farmers who have to deal with the loss of livestock don’t think so and deal with leopards as farmers have been deal
I’m off to Bushman’s Kloof – voted the best hotel in the world 2009! to participate in leopard tracking, as part of the Cape Leopard Trust Conservation project.
Bushmans Kloof has undertaken to support another major conservation project: The Cape Leopard Trust. This organisation is dedicated to the conservation of the Cape’s predator diversity, and in particular, the Cape leopard (Panthera Pardus) as the flagship species. Bushmans Kloof has become a primary sponsor of the Global Positioning Satellite systems (GPS) collaring and tracking project for the Cape leopard – the apex predator in the Western Cape.
The Cape Leopard Trust works towards conserving the Cape’s predator diversity through simultaneously implementing conservation and research projects, and tourism initiatives. The leopard is utilised as ‘flagship species’ to highlight the plight of the Trust and to find effective ways to facilitate harmonious co-existence between these magnificent animals and farm owners in the region.
Bushmans Kloof provides funds to enable the Trust to acquire three GPS collars which contain tracking devices – allowing researchers to determine the home range and behaviour of leopards in the Cederberg Mountains of the Western Cape. In turn this will supply invaluable information pertaining to leopard ecology in this area.
Leopards are secretive and elusive, preferring rocky terrain with plenty of cover. Their natural prey includes the Rock Hyrax (Dassie) and small antelope such as Klipspringer. These lovely cats, with their distinctively retiring nature, are sufficiently rare so as to pose practically no threat to man, and, unless directly threatened they will not harm.