Leopards, out of all the 5 big cat species has the widest range of habitat and can survive from cold climates to arid dry regions. They adapt very well to various conditions, They are solitary animals, highly elusive, street smart secretive and highly adept at camouflage hence tracking and photographing them becomes very difficult.
Over a period of last 5 years, I with my like minded friends have been visiting the jungles around Jaipur to see if I can find a leopard. Initially, the success rate was very less. We knew that the leopard is there (you get to hear so many stories of villagers seeing leopards)but had no idea where to look. We used to get a fleeting glimpse of a Leopard from time to time.
Slowly as We spent more times in these jungles, We started to associate various sounds, sights and behavior of other animals and birds with the presence of the big cat. For eg we started to distinguish the alarm call of a peacock or a partridge with its roosting call. The general chirping of birds like partridges as against the typical sound when they see a predator also started making sense. So over a period of time the leopard sighting increased.
Leopards being very shy, Sighting them for a few seconds and then making it used to the human presence is altogether a different ball game. Unlike the Tiger, a leopard will usually run away on seeing humans. But slowly we started to understand their behavior also so that we could sight them for a longer time.
Today, having sincerely and diligently tracking leopards for a period of 5 years we think that we have learnt a lot about leopards of Rajasthan. But suddenly one day the Leopard will do something so uncharacteristic to what we know that we think that we know nothing about it. This is what makes tracking and watching the leopard so interesting to us.
Following are images of Leopards from 2012 onwards (didnt carry a camera before) that I have spotted. These photos are not of great quality as I do not stress on cameras and photos. I rather would see them with my naked and eye and study their behavior.