Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Leopard

Panthera pardus

The leopard is one of the five “big cats” in the genus Panthera. It is a member of the Felidae family with a wide range in some parts of sub-Saharan Africa, West Asia, the Middle East, South and Southeast Asia to Siberia. Compared to other members of the Felidae, the leopard has relatively short legs and a long body with a large skull. It is similar in appearance to the jaguar, but is smaller and more slightly built. The species’ success in the wild is in part due to its opportunistic hunting behavior, its adaptability to habitats, its ability to run at speeds approaching 58 kilometers per hour (36 mph), its unequaled ability to climb trees even when carrying a heavy carcass, and its notorious ability for stealth. The leopard consumes virtually any animal that it can hunt down and catch. Its habitat ranges from rainforest to desert terrains.

© 2021 WNET. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

PBS is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.