While humans are on lockdown, the animal kingdom is not. A Cape leopard was recently spotted roaming around L’Ormarins, the main estate in the Anthonij Rupert Wyne portfolio in Franschhoek.
The farm has both low-lying land and steep slopes, with the vineyards planted on the Groot Drakenstein mountains. It is likely the leopard roams these parts and with the lack of human activity, he or she felt comfortable enough to venture closer to the farm.
The leopard was caught on camera making its way around the area and the video was shared on Twitter. You can hear the leopard make a guttural vocalisations.
L’Ormarins, Franschhoek: Visitor at Hidro last night 💙 pic.twitter.com/PMMNWc8y6r
— Cutmaker (@cutmaker) April 6, 2020
We spoke to Wildlife Biologist Jeannie Hayward from the Cape Leopard Trust, about a sighting of a leopard in the Walker Bay Fynbos Conservancy in March. She informed us that there are no more than a few hundred leopards in the Cape mountains.
“Leopards are an adaptable and widespread species; however, the persistence of certain subpopulations is threatened by habitat loss and fragmentation, hunting for trade, and persecution.
“Leopards in the Cape mountains are particularly vulnerable because they exist at comparatively low densities – they maintain very large home ranges in very limited suitable habitat. They are threatened by habitat loss due to urban and agricultural development; by prey base depletion (through illegal bushmeat hunting with snares); as well as by direct persecution in retaliation to livestock depredation.”
Image: Screenshot from Twitter video