Wounded Far Eastern leopard at the rehabilitation centre© Primorskii Regional Non-commercial Organization “The Center for Rehabilitation and Reintroduction of Tigers and Other Rare Animals” (PRNCO “Tiger Center”)
04 March 2019

Badly wounded Far Eastern leopard likely to have been injured by another leopard

Scientists believe that the male Far Eastern leopard who was captured in the vicinity of the rural town of Primorsky, Khasan District, close to the Kedrovaya Pad Biosphere Reserve (which is managed by Land of the Leopard) was injured in a conflict with another leopard. This can be seen from the type of wounds sustained by the leopard.

The predator was in grave condition when he was taken to the Centre for the Rehabilitation and Reintroduction of Tigers and Other Rare Animals in the village of Alekseyevka on 4 March. According to specialists, the leopard is about 30 months old. The examination showed that the leopard was exhausted, had numerous festering puncture wounds, a front leg fracture and atrophied hind leg muscles. Currently, the predator is receiving the necessary medical treatment, including antibiotics that are being given now after therapy support. However, the leopard's condition has not stabilised and remains very grave. It is still too early to say if he is going to pull through. The Far Eastern Leopards autonomous non-profit organisation has lent a hand with the treatment of the animal.

"During the operation and wound treatment, specialists, in addition to fresh injuries, noticed previous wounds that have already cicatrised," said Yekaterina Blidchenko, a zoologist at the rehabilitation centre and staffer at Land of the Leopard. "According to one version, the predator grew weak in the first clash, and the second one proved lethal to him. He would not have survived without help. The main task now is to stabilise his condition."

Based on the type of wounds on the leopard's head, stomach and other parts of his body, specialists have taken a bear, a tiger and dogs off the list of "suspects." Puncture wounds measuring between 0.5 centimetre and one centimetre are typical of injuries inflicted by cats.

So far, it is impossible to say what exactly triggered a likely conflict between two leopards. The predator might have been injured in a clash with another leopard over a female leopard or a territorial conflict.

The leopard is conscious now and is showing natural aggression towards humans.

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