10 Fascinating Facts about the Amur Leopard
Leopards are huge predators from the cat family. They're highly flexible, strong, vigorous and majestic. Unfortunately, they've increasingly been pushed out of hospitable climates due to human encroachment and today find themselves on the verge of extinction.

  1. Leopards are the only members of the cat family that bring their prey up onto a tree branch to be eaten.

  2. A leopard's spotted spotted skin pattern is unique - no two are alike, just like no two humans have identical fingerprints.

  3. Black panthers are not a separate species, but are leopards with melanism (i.e. they produce the dark-colored melanin skin pigment, the opposite of what albinos do). The recessive gene associated with this condition is found more commonly among leopards living in forested and mountainous areas, and in tropical Asian climates. Black panthers' skin is not entirely black as prominent spots can be seen. They can be born in a litter among spotted leopards. No cases of melanism have been observed among the Amur Leopards.

  4. The Far Eastern, or Amur, Leopard is the most peaceful of the species. No attacks against humans have ever been recorded. Younger Amur Leopards on have been found to occasionally follow human tracks out of curiosity. Human encounters have been limited to curiosity and observation instead of aggression or flight.

  5. All leopards are born with blue eyes; then they change color.

  6. Old and sick leopards are more likely to attack humans because they are easier to hunt than a quick or sharp-horned animal.

  7. A leopard's tail helps him to easily maneuver while jumping from cliffs and trees.\

  8. Leopards are great swimmers and while occasionally hunt fish and crabs.

  9. Leopards are more numerous in the world than other large cats. Only specific types of leopards, such the Amur Leopard and Amur Tiger, face the threat of extinction.

  10. Leopards live to be 10-15 years in the wild, but can reach up to 20 in captivity.

Colin Hines www.ColinHinesPhotography.com https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2093795
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