Leopards are relatively rarer to spot even in Africa where people who haven’t been to often think the will spot a cat once in ten minutes. In our last few trips to Kenya, we have noticed a great dip in the Leopard encounters in the Maasai Mara. But there used to be a time when we would toss a coin on such photography trips to decide if we will go for the leopard on the tree we know is resting or to the Cheetah family nearby.
More often than not – on this particular trip, we had to cross this tree where she had been spotted on every game drive as it was on the main track. So even if it was a “tail” in the toss and we were going for the Cheetah, we would stop by her and get carried away and spend a few minutes before someone got fed up of this individual.
This afternoon, we arrived at this tree and were slightly disappointed not to find her. We looked around every branch and after a moments minutes we spotted her on another branch where we hadn’t expected her to be. The Guineafowl constantly kept alarming as they knew her highness was having a nap on the tree.
Just as we thought she was busy snoring, she heard something in the bush and gave us this stare. She almost seemed like wanting to jump on us from the tree but I realised I was looking at her from a 600mm super-telephoto lens and she was actually interested in a Pumba wandering around the grass.
Even after feeding on a big Bush Buck and being in a position unable to move around for nearly two days, the hunter’s instinct is still the same.
Around 15 months after this extravagant time I spent with this female Leopard, I took some people to this tree to show them the spot while narrating plenty of her antics, to my surprise we found a Wildebeest carcass hanging on the same branch.
Must be her favorite hangout. She gave me at least 32 high quality completely different pictures over these three days I spent with her.