Does the leopard Panthera pardus still exist in the Eastern Karadeniz Mountains of Turkey?

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BASKAYA S., Bilgili E.

ORYX, vol.38, no.2, pp.228-232, 2004 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 38 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2004
  • Doi Number: 10.1017/s0030605304000407
  • Journal Name: ORYX
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.228-232
  • Keywords: distribution, Eastern Karadeniz Mountains, leopard, Panthera pardus tulliana, Turkey
  • Karadeniz Technical University Affiliated: Yes


The Anatolian leopard Panthera pardus tulliana is categorized as Critically Endangered, and the last known record of this subspecies in Turkey was the finding of fresh faecal pellets in 1992 in Termossos National Park. The leopard formerly occurred across most of Turkey, but particularly in the west, south and south-east regions. In this study we investigated the existence of the leopard in the Eastern Karadeniz Mountains in the north-east, where there have been no records of the leopard since 1956. Surveys for leopard sign, lasting 2-8 days each, were carried out from 1993 to 2002 at 46 sites. We found leopard footprints, which could be clearly differentiated from those of lynx Lynx lynx by their size, at 16 survey sites from Capans Mountains in the west to Karcal Mountain in the east. Further work now needs to be carried out to ascertain the size and status of the remaining leopard population.