With the recent sighting of a melanistic (black) leopard cub in Yala National Park, interest in the island’s apex predator– which happily never flags! – has again surged.
In March, the inaugural Global Leopard Conference (GLC) (leopardconference.org/), a virtual extravaganza of leopard research and conservation reporting from around the world was held, hosted out of South Africa.
We represented Sri Lanka, being asked to present three original research talks and honoured to have been asked to provide the wrap-up summary talk. With the nation’s favourite spotted (Or black!) cat in the news for the right reasons, the general interest in leopard conservation that exists in Sri Lanka, and the recently concluded GLC fresh in our minds, we thought this would be a good time to give an overview of the status of the leopard around the world, in Sri Lanka and the important role it plays for landscape conservation.