VOTD: Leopard vs. Python in Blood-Chilling Fight

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When mighty predators meet in the wild, it’s hard to predict what the outcome will be.

Pro tip: don’t try picking a fight with a snake unless you’re a leopard.

It’s one of those I-can’t-believe-they-caught-this-on-camera events.

A member of a safari tour group in South Africa’s Kruger National Park caught a mother leopard picking a fight with a rock python, the largest species of snake in Africa.

In this video, filmed by tourists on a safari tour , a curious leopard cub stands next to the bushes, where he seems to have discovered something “interesting” and assumes an attack position. Just to make sure everything’s fine, the cub’s protective mother approaches for a checkup and investigates  when suddenly a massive snake shows up causing it to lunge at her with its mouth wide open.  A few swipes of the paw draw out the python, but it strikes back forcing the cat to back off as her young one looks on.

.The mama leopard is completely fearless as the battle continues between her and the slippery creature. Although the video ends before we find out the winner, National Geographic reports  that the leopard emerged victorious and dined on her opponent with her cub.

This National Geographic video, posted Friday on YouTube, shows curious leopards that decide to take on Africa’s largest snake species. That would be the African Rock Python.

This nonvenomous snake can measure up to 6 meters (20 feet) long, making it one of the sixth largest snake species in the world. And just because it isn’t venomous doesn’t mean it isn’t dangerous. The rock python grows so large because it can squeeze to death and eat animals such as antelopes, monkeys and even crocodiles.

Different species of leopards live in Africa and Asia, according to the African Wild Foundation  , and the big cat can grow up to 140 pounds and 28 inches tall at their shoulder. Despite this run-in with a snake, leopards face a lot of danger from humans, who hunt them for their fur or as revenge for a leopard killing livestock.

The battle seems to end in a tie rather than a bloody victory. There’s no single winner here. But if a leopard can’t kill a python, what can?

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