1858 • • • 2009 • • • 2018

One morning in 2009 I was shocked to discover leopard footprints in the kitchen of our house, located in the middle of North Luangwa National Park, Zambia. They zigzagged through the kitchen, into the living room, and up to our sofa which was entirely covered in leopard hair. A cushion was missing. I found it in our office next to the generator, fluff torn by claws. The spoor continued: from the office the sneaky leopard made its way to our bedroom and even stole one of my pullovers from the wardrobe! I found the chewed-up corpus delicti in front of the house. By then, of course, the thief was long gone.

Claire Lewis and her husband Ed Sayer have been our programme managers in North Luangwa National Park, Zambia, since 2007. In North Luangwa we are conserving Zambia’s only population of black rhinos.