Encounters with Sri Lankan Leopards – The Island’s King of the Jungle

Did you know that Yala National Park has the highest density of leopards in a national park in the world? That makes it the ideal location to spot the Sri Lankan Leopard while on a safari.

Leopard

Leopards | Image Credit : © Mahoora Tented Safari Camps (https://www.mahoora.com/) / CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons, Leopard in Yala National Park, CC BY-SA 4.0

Yala National Park

The 950 square kilometre Yala National Park can be found on the south-eastern coast and is the preferred location for a leopard safari in Sri Lanka. You can visit this reserve on an eco-friendly adventure tour offered by the likes of Nature Odyssey. If you’re lucky, you will also spot jackals, elephants, deer, monkeys, sloth bears, water buffalos, land and water monitors and over 200 species of birds.

Sri Lankan Leopards

The Sri Lankan Leopard is a dapper russet yellow big cat with dark spots and is the largest subspecies of leopard in the world. At roughly 78 kgs, the males are 30% larger than females and are found throughout the country in various habitats. While leopards are considered nocturnal, it is common to spot them in the early mornings or late evenings.

An Endangered Beauty

However, the leopard count in Sri Lanka has fallen to 250 animals due to poaching and fragmentation of habitat. The Sri Lankan Leopard has been listed by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) as endangered.

Big Cat Conservation

The Wilderness and Wildlife Conservation Trust (WWCT) is working together with the Government of Sri Lanka and the Sri Lanka Wildlife Conservation to study the leopard and aid in its conservation. It is hoped that with a concerted effort the leopard population will once again thrive in Sri Lanka

Intrigued by history, art and food, Lavinia Woolf is a writer who is passionate about the extraordinary and writes of the exhilarating and enchanting. Google+