These shots were taken by 32-year-old wildlife photographer Mithun H. from Bangalore who captured a remarkable moment between the leopard and black panther as the pair stood side by side in a forest clearing.
Big cats Saaya and Cleopatra, Mithun explained, have been courting for four years. Cleo, as the photographer affectionately calls the stunning female leopard, is the dominant personality.
There are dangers associated with wildlife photography, Mithun conceded, but studying animal behavior and knowing one’s limits is the very best safeguard against accidents and injuries.
“These beautiful creatures are generally more scared and shy than we think,” Mithun explained. “Give them space and let them get comfortable with you, and you realize how close and personal you can get with their world.
“The secret is patience and respect.”
“There is a lot to learn from these beautiful creatures,” Mithun shared. “They live by the day. All they are bothered about is their next meal, the immediate safety of their loved ones … We as humans need to appreciate the beautiful life and celebrate it every day, just like these amazing animals.”