Friday, August 01, 2008

Leopards in Antarctica!

December, 2007

Leopards? In Antarctica? Absolutely! And just like the leopards on the savannas of Africa, these leopards are top end predators who can ambush small prey like penguins and other sea birds, as well as even taking on much larger prey like crabeater seals!

This one has gone into stealth mode, looking for that unsuspecting penguin on ice.

Gotcha!! No wonder penguins always appear nervous when they enter or exit the water from ice floes. Leopard seals are masters of ambushing penguins like this unlucky gentoo.

What's to be done after a nice penguin snack? A power nap of course! Leopard seals will spend hours and hours hauled out on an ice floe and resting after a nice meal.

This sleeping leopard didn't even deign to wake up at our slow approach in the Zodiac!

Here's another leopard caught on camera yawning (my, what a HUGE gape and BIG teeth you have!)

Even pups have relatively large teeth and mouth, this one is almost ready to be weened from mom.

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