A leopard that was caught in a settlement near Brits in July, has been looked after by the Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre for the past month, and has now been released in a suitable and safe area in the Magaliesberg mountain.
The leopard caused havoc when it wandered into the Klipgat township north of Brits on 29 July. The animal wandered the streets and then into yards, causing chaos in the township.
The Department of Economic Development, Environment, Conservation and Tourism (DEDECT) was alerted and the leopard was found hiding under a vehicle. It was darted by veterinarian, Dr Alwyn Venter and brought the Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre in De Wildt
“The origin of the leopard was not known and DEDECT officials requested the Ann van Dyk Cheetah Centre to hold and care for this leopard until a suitable release site could be found. We have a purpose-built enclosure funded by donors especially for this purpose. After monitoring the leopard for a period we were satisfied that the leopard was healthy and ready for release into a suitable wild space,” Petro van Eeden, manager of the centre said.
DEDECT collected the leopard from the centre recently and he was released into a safe area in the Magaliesberg.
“We would like to thank DEDECT for the opportunity to care for the leopard and also Dr Alwyn Venter and Dr Paul Bartels for their services rendered free of charge. And thank you to Tokkie Botes of Flying for Freedom who supplied us with venison that was fed to the leopard while at the centre.”
Van Eeden said the cheetah centre supports the conservation work done by DEDECT and assists wherever possible.