Pretty!: 'Strawberry' Leopard Spotted In South Africa

April 13, 2012


This is a shot of a leopard in South Africa that's suspected of having erythrism, a genetic mutation believed to cause an excess of red pigments, or a deficit of dark ones. "So it's a ginger?" Yeah, it prefers the term strawberry.

Erythrism is very unusual in carnivores, and the condition appears most often in raccoons, Eurasian badgers, and coyotes, Hunter noted.

"There are some spotted leopard skins and melanistic specimens--black panthers--in museums with red undertones, but fading probably contributes to that," he said.

The strawberry leopard seems healthy and likely suffers no ill consequences from his pinkish hue, Hunter said: "He's obviously a successful animal."

Hit the jump for a shot of a regular leopard in case you don't think this strawberry one looks that different (normal 'vanilla' leopards have almost black spots). Then, cross your fingers they find a banana colored one next. "You're thinking about smoothies, aren't you?" I'm never not!

Hit the jump for a plain one.


"Strawberry" Leopard Discovered--A First [nationalgeographic]

Thanks to Melissa, who's hoping for a Neapolitan version next.

  • I'm not a ginger - I'm a redhead.
    And that's one redhead who can be in my league.

  • Erico F.


  • Gary_Arizona

    hey gw you care to explain the tag  "mother nature you crazier that time i held a little cactus in front of my crotch and pretended i had an alien wiener"

  • Geekologie

     i thought it was self explanatory

  • rikster81

    he makes that tree so relaxing!

  • Ryan Boyce

    Wow, the comparison picture really does show the difference. Neat stuff.

  • megaluis15

    "his"? how unfortunate.

  • Rayn_A

    "Spotted' - I see what you did there...

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