Land of the Leopard National Park camera traps have recorded an unidentified leopard for the first time in a while: a young female* about 3 years old. Researches have tagged the newcomer Leo 86F. In most cases, numbers are assigned to leopards that were recorded at a young age as cubs, but this leopardess is the first leopard to be identified at an older age. Researchers identified the mysterious stranger when analysing videos from 2015.
"The last time we recorded unidentified wild cats was in 2014. It's unclear whether the new female arrived at the national park from a long distance or simply avoided camera traps until now. One thing is clear: this unnamed female is feeling comfortable now, and her uninhibited and carefree behaviour proves it," said Anna Vitkalova, head of the research department at Land of the Leopard National Park.
Leopardess Leo 86F has settled in Kedrovaya Pad Nature Reserve and videos suggest that she is in a good shape: cameras have recorded her climbing over large snowdrifts and up high mountains. The researchers have come to the conclusion that she is ready for new relationships: many videos show her actively sniffing around.
The scientists have nearly finished analysing the photo data for 2015 and the results will be reported in the near future. The experts at Land of the Leopard National Park have been using trap cameras since 2013, which allows them to accurately identify the leopards in the national park.
*At the time of writing (September 2016), the sex of the leopard was determined incorrectly. According to information received later, Leo 86M is a male leopard.