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Porcupine Parents Protect Babies from Leopard

A leopard tries to grab hold of two baby porcupines, but the parents have a well-coordinated defence strategy! Will the leopard fight or give up? 😮

Mohammed Kathrada Avatar

A family of porcupines fighting a leopard in an attempt to save their two young. Who will emerge victorious?

Leopard attempts to catch porcupine babies

Mfundo Nyambi, a 31-year-old field guide in the Kruger National Park, was fortunate enough to witness this entire sighting on foot. He shared the incredible moment and sighting with LatestSightings.com.

“As a guide in the Kruger National Park, I have had the privilege of witnessing some incredible wildlife sightings over the years. However, one particular experience stands out. I was preparing to take a group of guests on a bush walk. We had just left Crocodile Bridge Rest Camp when one of my guests informed me of a leopard that had been seen in the area earlier that morning. With a slight bit of anticipation, we headed in that direction.”

Porcupines fighting leopard

“After searching for a short while. We decided it was best to leave the leopard and instead prepare for our morning walk. I stopped the vehicle on the roadside and informed the guests that it was safe for them to disembark from the vehicle. Whilst I was conducting the pre-trail brief on the safety and procedures of the walk, a deep sound echoed from the culvert that was a few meters from us.”

“On the road in front of me, a porcupine mother emerged from the culvert with two youngsters. They were shortly followed by the male porcupine. Then a leopard! The same leopard we had been searching for that morning had now found us and was in the middle of a hunt. I hurried my guest to the safety of the vehicle and watched on in awe.”


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Porcupines are typically mute creatures and are not frequently observed vocalizing. The deep grunt that was audible was a definite warning of danger and a sign that the porcupines were under stress of some kind.

“At first, I thought the leopard would quickly overpower the porcupines. As I watched the scene unfold, I was in awe of their determination and bravery. The porcupine couple worked together, using their sharp quills as a weapon against the leopard. The leopard tried to pounce, but each time it did, the porcupines would turn their backs and raise their quills. Successfully deterring the leopard from attacking.”

Porcupines fighting leopard

“The parents made sure that the two youngsters were always in the middle and out of reach of the leopard. After a few minutes, the leopard eventually gave up and retreated into the bush. The porcupine family was able to continue on their way, safe and unharmed.”

Moments like these serve as a reminder that we share this beautiful land with a diverse and fascinating array of wildlife. It’s up to us to protect and preserve it for future generations.

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