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This month’s Nature’s Heartbeat is about the African Leopard. I’ve seen many leopards in the Africa bush and each time is a special moment. Their beauty is undeniable. I’m always in awe of them.

Unfortunately, as with so much of our wildlife, the African leopard’s primary threat is human activity. Habitat fragmentation, reduced prey base and human-wildlife conflict has greatly reduced its population.

Supporting organizations like the African Wildlife Foundation can help. It’s the leading international conservation organization focused exclusively on Africa’s wildlife and wild lands. AWF’s programs and conservation strategies are designed to protect the wildlife and wild lands of Africa and ensure a more sustainable future for Africa’s people.

 

 

African Leopard

By Kathleen Reeder

 

Rosette patterns

Painted by God

Blending with nature

to go unseen.

 

By day she’s lounging,

hanging from tree branches.

Feet dangling, eyes half open,

Aware but safe from danger.

 

A graceful big cat,

Such beauty, such poise,

leaving scent and claw marks

telling others to stay away.

 

By moonlight from her vantage point

silent and cunning,

She surveys the terrain

ready with a deadly pounce.

 

Only a third of the size,

but stronger than a lion.

Able to hoist a large kill

Straight up a tree.

 

With her golden coat

Showered by beauty,

To see an African leopard

is truly a gift.

 

2 thoughts on “African Leopard”

  1. A lovely poem be fitting such noble feline! And accompanied with your amazing photographs!
    Thank you for sharing that experience with all of us!
    John G

  2. Beautiful photography that truly captures this magnificent animal. Your poem captures its essence.