One of the most exceptional pieces of leopard film ever to come out of South Africa was shot by John Varty at Londolozi. A female leopard, resting up in a marula tree, sees an opportunity and launches an aerial attack on an impala that happens to be seeking out shade in the wrong place at the wrong time.
The footage is part of an archive of 45 years of leopard viewing at Londolozi, and, as we celebrate Heritage Day in South Africa today, we thought it fitting to share six posts that celebrate our leopard heritage.
From videos that will amaze you, to Londolozi’s first leopard (the so-called “Mother Leopard”) and an unforgettable sighting by Londolozi Headranger, Kate Imrie – enjoy, and happy Heritage Day.
1. Aerial Leopard Hunt – JV Archives
This is possibly the most famous reel of leopard footage to come out of Londolozi. Filmmaker, John Varty, captures a leopard launch itself out of a tree and onto an unsuspecting impala.
2. A Bulldozer, an Ecologist and Londolozi’s First Leopard
Why do leopards thrive at Londolozi? It’s all part of a forward-thinking approach to restoring the land that began with a “mad Professor” back in the 1970s. Although the approach was considered “eccentric” at the time, today it is celebrated for creating one of Africa’s number one habitats for leopards. CLICK HERE.
3. Intense Footage: Big Male Leopard Stalks and Kills Warthog
All kills are different. Most of the time though, leopards are stealth hunters, relying on their ability to ambush. Leopards position themselves as close as possible to their prey (often within five metres) and then launch themselves explosively, as this large male warthog finds out in the following video.
4. 30 Out Of This World Leopard Instagrams
Oftentimes, there are no words to describe the beauty of leopards. You see them “laying up” in trees, daintily lapping at waterholes, walking steadily past your vehicle and your breath is taken away. But the first time a leopard turns its heads, lifts its eyelids and stares straight at you – it’s an extraordinary moment. These are 30 of our favourite leopard photos shared on Instagram. CLICK HERE.
5. An Interview with Londolozi Head Ranger, Kate Imrie
In a recent interview, Londolozi Head Ranger – Kate Imrie – was asked to think back to her best ever sighting. Her answer sums up just how surprising the bush (and leopards) can be. CLICK HERE.
6. Our Conservation Heroes
It is thanks to our team of incredible Rangers and Trackers that we are able to experience, photograph and film the leopards of Londolozi. Earlier this year, we compiled a photo blog that pays tribute to that team. It would be amiss not to include it on Heritage Day. CLICK HERE.
The Leopards of Londolozi iBook chronicles Londolozi’s leopard dynasty over the past 31 years. The interactive book is a record of family lineages, identities, photographs and stories of the various offspring and independent leopards, starting with the story of the Mother Leopard. To download this book, CLICK HERE.
You can also see more leopard footage by exploring Londolozi’s dedicated YouTube channel.