Kenya: First Photographs of An African Black Leopard in 100 Years

Kenya: First Photographs of An African Black Leopard in 100 Years

Kenya: First Photographs of An African Black Leopard in 100 Years

"I had a quick look at the last trap, not expecting to find much", he said.

Although not a black panther, the biologists believe the leopard may be the panther's mother.

Burrard-Lucas told MailOnline Travel that it had been his dream to photograph the black leopard since childhood.

National Geographic adds that there are nine leopard subspecies ranging from Africa all the way to eastern Russian Federation.

According to reports by CNN, Pilfold and his team set their cameras in Laikipia after getting reports of the existence of the cat in Kenya.

At night, the female panther was seen alone, but during the day she was seen following an adult female leopard.

"It was the ultimate subject".

"As far as I know, these are the first high-quality camera trap photographs of a wild melanistic leopard ever taken in Africa", Burrard-Lucas wrote. "I couldn't believe it and it took a few days before it sank in that I had achieved my dream", he wrote.

The leopard is black as a result of a gene that causes a surplus pigment in the skin or hair of the animal - known as melanism - so that it appears black.

Melanistic leopards have been reported in and around Kenya for decades. It noted that it's the first time a black leopard has been seen in Africa in 100 years, and most sightings of the creature occur in Asia.

In comics and movies, Marvel's Black Panther is a superhero, granted powers by the heart-shaped herb and a connection with the Panther God, Bast.

He leads a conservation project in partnership with the San Diego Zoo and has been independently tracking leopards for a year and half.

The black leopard, known as a black panther in Africa and Asia, is a secretive and elusive creature.

These new photos were captured by wildlife photographer Will Burrard Lucas.

A 2017 paper tracked melanism in leopards globally but researchers only had reference to one high-quality photo of a black leopard taken in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in 1909. (Supplied) The Camtraptions camera trap used to capture the animal.

The term that makes them black is called melanism and it's the same thing that makes a house cat black, or any other cat species.

For those who have watched the famous Black Panther movie, it is easy to think that just seeing the photo of such a lovely creature gives all manner of wakanda vibes.

Speaking to Kenyans.co.ke, Annabelle Carey was audibly excited when asked about the rare sighting of the melanistic leopard close to their camp.

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