Three leopards have been spotted roaming the N2 in northern KwaZulu-Natal on Thursday.
Jozini Municipality Mayor MfanaNaye Mathe issued a warning to road users in the area between Mkhuze and Hluhluwe.
“The leopards were spotted crossing the island and were on the road. It’s urged that especially truck drivers be careful. Avoid getting out of the vehicle and onto the road or standing outside cars. These leopards were seen near Biyela and near the local river," Mathe said.
The Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife denied reports that the leopards seen on the highway escaped from nearby game reserves.
"Like animals such as snakes, jackals, and hyenas, leopards are free-living in many parts of KZN.
"They are found inside and outside of the protected areas. So, if next time you spot it, count yourself lucky, as they are rare animals to spot. Appreciate its beauty and don’t engage," Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife said.
Last year, park officials managed to round up five elephants and return them to the reserve. At the time, Ezemvelo's Musa Mntambo said the fence may have been damaged following heavy rains, and the elephants managed to escape. Mntambo added that the elephants could have escaped to search for marula trees.
In 2019, lions escaped from the uMfolozi Game Reserve.