• Leopard in Sri Lanka

Everything you need to know about seeing Asiatic leopards in the wild

Although Asiatic leopards remain elusive in the parks of India and Sri Lanka, due to the lack of other dominant predators leopards are easier to spot hunting their prey in Asia than their African counterparts. Early morning game drives provide the perfect setting to see these big cats slinking through the bush at dawn.

Yala National Park in Sri Lanka is thought to have the highest density of leopard populations anywhere in the world yet they are still considered near threatened by the IUCN.

Noel Rodrigo’s Leopard Safari Camp is a fantastic place to stay to see these big cats in Yala National Park.

Experts view: Arabella Worthington

Experts view: Arabella Worthington

In India the best time to see the leopard is November to June and sightings in Sri Lanka can be fantastic between March and October. 

Leopard, Sri Lanka

the Asiatic leopard

Similarly to African leopards, Asian leopards have short legs and stocky bodies which gives them a low centre of gravity and allows them to slink through grasslands relatively unseen. Leopard tails are usually longer than half their body length offering a great sense of balance when climbing and eating in trees. Male Asiatic leopards are said to be approximately 30% larger than their female counterparts and live apart as solitary creatures.

The colouring of Asiatic leopard coats vary from straw yellow to pale brown tones which helps them blend into the background of the national park landscapes. As with African leopards they have clear rosette markings and black spots in places.

As leopards are generally nocturnal creatures they can be seen hunting at dusk and dawn or just relaxing in the late afternoon sunshine.

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