She seemed foolish at first, childish and inane in her abilities. The Vomba Young Female Leopard had spotted the mongoose running into the small shrub and was after it in a matter of seconds. The leopard was a live wire…a vibrant current bristling with energy and excitement at the possibility of a playmate that would turn into a meal. That is, if she could successfully catch it.
Her skill was not as deft as one might have thought. She was still young, but independent and forced to survive on her own. She would have to be persistent in her attempt to catch the creature hiding amidst the brush. She would have to leave behind the stigma of stealth, cunning and effortless virtuosity that is so indicative of the leopard. Instead she just needed to catch the prey by any means necessary.
When I watch this video I am reminded that there are no points for style out in the wild. Some animals may not be the most graceful or enigmatic in what they do, despite how equipped they look. Others may lack the flamboyancy, style or mastery that creates popular attention. At the end of the day however, it is the persistence that these animals show that really determines their survival.
Lao Tzu said ‘A jug fills drop by drop’ and the wild spoke those same utterances to me when I watched this leopard hunt step by step. For this animal it is a game, one of cunning, tactics and persistence. For a leopard, the persistence to perfect its art lies at the root of its survival and thus at the heart of its nature.
Filmed by: Brett Wallington
Written by: Rich Laburn