African LeopardPanthera pardus pardus
Class: Mammalia Order: Carnivora Family: Felidae
Weight: 65-170 lbs
Leopards are carnivores and hunt a wide variety of prey depending on their habitat.
Lifespan (Wild): 7-9 years
Lifespan (Captivity): 15-20 years
Habitat & Range
Forests and grasslands of Africa
- A leopard’s spots are called “rosettes”. Rosettes serve as effective camouflage so they can easily hide while hunting at night and resting during the day.
- Leopards are very capable climbers, and they are strong enough to carry large prey up into trees to keep it safe from scavengers such as hyenas. Leopards are also agile jumpers and can leap up to 20 feet horizontally.
- Leopards tend to be solitary and have a distinct barking territorial call. These big cats also mark their territory using urine and tree scratching.
At the Zoo
Our African leopard habitat was designed with help from a group of middle school girls as part of the “Magic Mowgli Project”. The purpose of this project was to boost young girls’ interest in math and science.
Leopards are greatly threatened by illegal hunting and loss of habitat. They are a target for trophy hunting, and their body parts are sometimes used in traditional ceremonies and medicine.