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International Leopard Day 2023


 Source: DTE


Context: International Leopard Day is a new annual event that was officialized on May 3, 2023, with the launch of a dedicated portal, “” by the Cape Leopard Trust (CLT).


About Leopard:

Scientific Name Panthera pardus
About The leopard is the smallest of the Big Cats (Of genus Panthera namely the Tiger, Lion, Jaguar, Leopard, and Snow Leopard), and known for its ability to adapt in a variety of habitats.
Features It is a nocturnal animal (hunts by night). Melanism is a common occurrence in leopards, wherein the entire skin of the animal is black in colour, including its spots. A melanistic leopard is often called black panther or jaguar, and mistakenly thought to be a different species.
Habitat It occurs in a wide range in sub-Saharan Africa, in small parts of Western and Central Asia, on the Indian subcontinent to Southeast and East Asia.
Population in India As per a recent report ‘Status of leopards in India, 2018’ (by MoEFCC), there has been a “60% increase in the population count of leopards in India from 2014 estimates’’. It numbers nearly 13000 currently with the highest population in Madhya Pradesh> Karnataka> Maharashtra
Threats Poaching for the illegal trade of skins and body parts. Road Kill,  Habitat Loss and Fragmentation. Human-Leopard conflict.
Conservation Status IUCN Red List: Vulnerable. CITES: Appendix-I. Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972: Schedule-I.