This month, we shine our spotlight on one of the most amicable residents of the Manikdoh Leopard Rescue Centre: Shankar! The unique charm and gentle nature of this friendly feline have often melted our hearts. Shankar’s captivating personality makes him one of the most affectionate leopards at the centre.
Leopards, known for their elusive nature, are often associated with aggression. However, Shankar breaks the mould by displaying extraordinary friendliness. His journey with Wildlife SOS began in 2008, when he was just a vulnerable two-month-old cub who arrived at the Manikdoh Leopard Rescue Centre (MLRC) from Rahuri, Ahmednagar. He was brought in alone as an orphan, and from that moment on, our dedicated team has raised him as a member of our extended family.
Among the most endearing characteristics of Shankar is his fondness for human interaction. While other leopards tend to keep their distance, Shankar is always comfortable and at ease in the presence of people because he was hand-reared by our team members. Shankar’s amiability has carved out a special place in the hearts of everyone at MLRC.
As Shankar matured over the years, his cooperative nature only grew stronger. Now, at 15 years of age, he remains the epitome of gentleness. He recognises his caregivers and responds well to them. Shankar has formed a remarkable bond with humans who have showered him with attention over the years.
At his age, Shankar has entered a more serene phase of life, displaying a penchant for rest and relaxation. Most often, one can find him reclining on his wooden platform enrichment, which serves as a cosy bed during the day. Like every feline, grooming is a favourite pastime for Shankar. He indulges in cleaning himself, meticulously attending to his sleek and magnificent coat.
While rains bring vitality to the surrounding environment, Shankar doesn’t share any enthusiasm for them. He prefers to seek shelter within a well-shaded retreat within his field. Laziness takes over, and Shankar’s usual adventurous spirit takes a brief hiatus until the skies clear out.
Capturing Shankar’s playful and mischievous side is a delight for our photographers. He playfully rubs himself against the fence, showcasing his fun-filled behaviour. When faced with a camera lens, Shankar takes the opportunity to show off his charismatic charm. He gazes back at the photographers, posing like a regal leopard!
With his gentle and open heart, Shankar continues to amaze us all. From his small yet meaningful gestures to his expressive eyes, Shankar reminds us how love holds an unwavering power in animal care. You too can support the welfare of leopards like Shankar by becoming a monthly donor.