Stalking through the long grass, all that can be seen are two oval black ears and a single white strip. It makes its way onto the road, there is a sudden flash, and the camera trap has taken its picture. A #serval (Leptailurus serval)! This species of cat is medium-sized, slender, yet strong, with long legs and prominent oval-shaped ears. The fur is boldly spotted black on tawny, with two or four black stripes from the top of the head down the neck and back, transitioning into spots. Each coat pattern is unique to that individual, making them identifiable. Serval are primarily nocturnal, though more diurnal than most cats, active in the early morning hours and late afternoon into the evening.
The camera traps of the regional leopard #cameratrap survey carried out by Panthera, Wildlife ACT and Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife captured this slender cat walking past a camera on the hunt for prey. It was again captured and startled by the camera on its way back carrying its rodent dinner. #Servals are specialists in hunting rodents and birds in tall grass, with small mammals accounting for 94% of their diet.
Sadly, servals are threatened by habitat fragmentation, poaching and illegal trade.
Photo property of @pantheracats
Text by #Wildlife ACT Monitor @staceykleinsnakenborg
#wildcat #africanwildlife #africananimals #cameratraps #cameratrapping #wildlifeconservation #wildlifemonitoring