EXTRACT FROM THE FOLLOWING THIRD PARTY SOURCE: Lowvelder
A tour guide was injured when a leopard attacked him in the Kruger National Park (KNP) yesterday, 2 July.
The leopard which attacked tour guide Mr Curtis Plumb (38) has allegedly been euthanised.
Ms Helene Boshoff posted a photo of the leopard hanging onto Plumb’s arm on Camps and Roads of Kruger Facebook page. Several Facebook users commented that the animal appeared to have been sick. Mr Mario Paul, also a safari guide, confirmed this. “I drove past the leopard too. It appeared very thin and ill and showed a lot of interest in the vehicles,” he said.
Ms Robyn Baard, spokesman for Mediclinic Nelspruit where Plumb is currently being treated, said a doctor was still busy assessing his wounds.
SANParks issued a media statement, saying that the incident occurred just after 13:00 on the Alpha Loop on the H4-1 just outside Skukuza Camp.
“According to eye witnesses, the guide was with about eight tourists on his vehicle and watching the leopard some two metres from it. The animal cunningly disappeared, probably went around the guide’s side while the group was still searching for it. The guide was relaxed when suddenly the leopard leapt and grabbed his arm, trying to jump into the vehicle.
Everybody in the vehicle started hitting the leopard with any object they had with them. The leopard would not let go of the guide’s arm; until a tourist from another vehicle rushed and repeatedly used his vehicle to scare off the animal and that is when it eventually let go.
We would like to thank the tourist from another vehicle for his quick and decisive action as he saved the guide and tourists’ lives. It is suspected that the leopard was fighting with another one as its hind was badly injured. The other leopard was spotted in the area watching from a distance,” General manager of Communications and Marketing, Mr William Mabasa, said.
According to spiralhorntours.co.za, Plumb is originally from the United Kingdom. He came to South Africa due to his love of the bush and nature. “He has a passion for travelling and has travelled through large parts of East and Southern Africa, before returning to South Africa to train as a guide. Curtis has been a guide ever since. He has been guiding in the Kruger National Park since 2011 and is still enjoying the bush as much as when he just started,” the page read.