An Indian photographer has managed to capture the first close-up footage of its kind of the rare Amur leopard in Russia's Land of the Leopard National Park.
Originally from India, Thomas Vijayan came to Primorsky as a tourist. The photographer, who has spent many years capturing pictures of leopards in Africa, learned about the existence of Far Eastern leopards and reportedly dreamt of combining the cat with its tropical roots and Russia’s famous snow dunes in a single shot, an official from the Park told Sputnik in an exclusive interview.
The high-definition shot, which captures even the smallest hair on the leopard’s muzzle, was obtained thanks to Vijayan’s professional camera trap, the official noted.
Commenting on the achievement, Vijayan said: “The landscape surrounding the leopards is noteworthy. I believe that it also adds value to the photo. Long years of hard work and planning made this photograph possible. Capturing Far Eastern leopard on the snow was my dream. It all paid off when I obtained the shot of one of the rarest cat in the wild.”
Vijayan is a laureate of multiple international photography contests, including the 2023 World Nature Photography Awards. He was named the 2022 Safari Photographer of the year by Wilderness Safaris as well as the winner of 2021 World Nature Photography Awards.