Wounded Leopard

Captured early morning near Kwetsani camp in Botswana’s Okavango Delta,  we observed this leopard as it walked through tall grass and then into a thicket of bushes.  Anticipating that he may emerge through the other side of the thicket,  we quickly moved our vehicle around to the other side in the hope of getting a good view of him.  This strategy worked as he walked into view for us.   It was only at that time we realized that he was injured.

Leopards are territorial and will attack or even kill other leopards that enter their vicinity, it appeared that this fellow had run into just such a problem. There were several nasty bite wounds to his neck and chest, and he was drooling quite heavily too. I wondered afterwards what might have become of him, whether he might survive or not. Given the nature of his injuries and the extent to which he appeared to be struggling, there is the prospect that he would succumb to his injuries.

Wounded leopard, Kwetsani, Okavango Delta, Botswana.  Canon 5D 500mm, F8, shutter speed 1/400 second at ISO 3200.