Very Rare Leopards Caught On Camera (Video)

Javan leopards may be one of the rarest, most highly threatened species in the world, shrouded in mystery and legend. But as it turns out, when they think no one is watching, they're really just adorable big cats -- and well worth saving.

Camera traps have long been a favorite tool among conservationists, allowing for the visual tracking of animals' movement and behavior with minimal disturbance. Most of the time though, such footage offers just a fleeting glimpse of passing wildlife going about their business. In this video on the other hand, captured in the forests of Indonesia, we're lucky enough to see one Javan leopard getting all cozy in front of the camera, almost as if to ask for a belly rub.

In all, folks from the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) installed 30 or so cameras around a rainforest national park in West Java to capture this scene -- though with such clear footage, all that effort was certainly well worth it. And to think, this species was first caught on film just two years ago.

"After I set up the camera and I checked the results, and I saw the leopard pictures I was very, very happy," says CIFOR researcher Age Kridalaksana.

Sadly, such candid footage of Javan leopards in the wilds of Indonesia may among the last the world will ever see. After decades of being poached for their skins and losing their crucial habitat to human encroachment, the species of big cat is currently listed as 'critically endangered'.

"Indeed we have a very big challenge since more than 300 villages are located inside or around the park with more than 100,000 individuals," says forestry technician Iwan Ridwan. "The most significant threat is deforestation, since deforestation reduces the habitat of these species and reduces their living space in order to search for food and to reproduce."

VIDEO Javan leopard caught on camera trap
Javan leopard caught on camera trap from CIFOR stock footage library on Vimeo.

Responses to "Camera trap captures stunning footage of a rare Javan leopard"

  1. Morgana says:

    What a beauty!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Unknown says:

    Omg, so beautiful!

  3. moon star says:

    he's sure having a good back-scratch and having a few minutes of fun in his hunted life. it's so sad to think a beautiful animal like this is going to be wiped from the face of the earth. are there any in zoos? i hope a few are saved to keep the bloodline going. i suppose the trouble with that is they would have to be kept so that they aren't inbred. i just hate to see any of the earth's animals go extinct, and i imagine as i type, another species is doing just that.

  4. Unknown says:

    Simply stunning .... sad to think they are soooo endangered

  5. pnjohnson says:

    What? There's one left? Kill it quickly, cut down those trees, so more palm oil trees can be planted.
    PS I hope everyone understands the concept of satire.

  6. Anonymous says:

    it kinda looks like they drugged it

  7. Candy says:

    what a beautiful creature....hope I finds a way to survive mankind

  8. Anonymous says:

    Nature's Beauty!One of many kinds.Please help keep them around.They belong here as we all do.

  9. Mep says:

    That is amazing and beautiful. It is so sad to think they are almost extinct. I understand your sarcasm pnjohnson. It is sad to think of this poor beautiful creatures plight. It seems to me that it is all mankind thinks of. Destruction and death. I am sickened.

  10. I just wanted to put my hand in there and give him a good belly scratch.

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