Leopard (Reaktion Books - Animal)

Leopard (Reaktion Books - Animal)

Desmond Morris

Language: English

Pages: 224

ISBN: 1780232799

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


The sleek, spotted leopard may be the smallest of the big cats, but its ferocity and solitary style makes lions and tigers seem puny in comparison. Lacking the social mentality of other animals, the leopard is stealthy and selfish, ambushing its prey and carrying it high into a tree where it can dine alone. Humans call leopards the “perfect predator." In Leopard, renowned zoologist Desmond Morris seeks to show all sides of the cat, delving into the fascinating history of these incredible animals.
 
Morris examines the leopard’s athletic elegance, predatory skill, wary shyness, and cunning intelligence while also exploring the animal’s parental devotion, preference for solitude, and capacity for revenge. In addition to tracing the evolution of leopards, he considers how humans have related to the animal throughout history. Leopards, he shows, have long featured in the art, mythology, and folklore of ancient Greece, Persia, Rome, and even England, where they have not lived for several millennia. But humans and leopards do not always coexist peacefully; as Morris explains, leopards have been known to attack humans when their food is scarce or they are injured. He reveals how humans have exploited the cats, attempting to train them for circus roles, and how today some people are now making strides toward the leopard’s conservation. He also describes their rich symbolism, appearances in literature and film, and the use of the leopard print in both haute couture and down-market fashion.
 
Packed with compelling images of this amazing animal in action, Leopard sheds new light on these gorgeous cats.

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One on the ground has the distinctive rosettes of the leopard. This detail is important because the slender body shape of the two cats suggests, at first glance, that they are both cheetahs. The implication of the rosettes is that both these species were being used for hunting, although this was usually the role of the cheetah. Leashed leopard in a detail of Bernardo Gozzoli’s Journey of the Magi, 1459. Jan Collaert’s engraving after Jan van der Straet, ‘Capturing Leopards with the Help of Nets.

And Berlin to South Africa and Cuba, Egypt and Australia, but her greatest triumph was in India, perhaps because her big cats were all Indian leopards. Each of Vallecita’s troupe of six leopards had its own personality. There was Grace the growler, a prima donna who would only work if she was given the largest of the travelling cages; Victoria the sly one, who always tried to gain an advantage over the others; and Tom the troublemaker who would stir up a squabble and then sit back and watch it.

Older, more boisterous cubs. Pick them up in your arms like a baby and they may struggle, writhe, scratch and even bite, but hold them up firmly by the scruff of the neck, and they cannot help subsiding into limp submission. Without this reaction in the wild, the mother would find it hard to transport her offspring quickly to safety. The leopard’s powerful neck muscles allow it to carry heavy prey high into a tree. Masai Mara mother carrying her cub. Perhaps surprisingly, there is no fixed.

Luke Hunter, ‘The Leopard: The World’s Most Persecuted Big Cat’, Conservation in Action, Twelfth Vision Annual, www.panthera.org, pp. 88–94. 6 Shuja Islam and Zohra Islam, Hunting Dangerous Game with the Maharajas in the Indian Sub-Continent (New Dehli, 2004). 7 ‘Endangered Leopards Battling for Survival’, Times of India (18 May 2010). 5  LEOPARD ATTACKS 1 Charles Kimberlin Brain, The Hunters or the Hunted? (Chicago, 1981), fig. 221; Simon J. M. Davis, The Archaeology of Animals (London, 1987),.

The tribal ruler, giving him greatly heightened status. African decorated cloth ornaments occasionally included a leopard in their design. These portrayals usually have a charmingly naïve, Sunday painter style that differs markedly from that seen in the much more assertive bronze figures and wood carvings. Another way in which tribal leaders could absorb the power of the leopard was to kill one, skin it and use its pelt as a ceremonial decoration. The king of the Bandjun in the Cameroons has a.

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