Leopards are medium-sized cats found in a range of colors from pale yellow to gray to chestnut. A leopard's shoulders, upper arms, back and haunches are marked with dark spots in a rosette pattern, while the head, chest and throat are marked with small black spots. Large black spots cover the leopard's white belly. Black, or melanistic, leopards are common, especially in dense forests.
Leopards can live for over 20 years, and are found throughout most of Africa and Asia from the middle east to the Soviet Union, Korea, China, India, and Malaysia.
Leopards are nocturnal animals, meaning they are active at night. During the day, they rest in thick brush or in trees. Leopards are solitary, preferring to live alone. They are very agile and good swimmers. They are able to leap more than 20 feet.