Sightings of big cats are not especially common in Denmark, although we have had some from time to time – a few lynxes (strangely enough the most common type in Denmark), the odd panther, a lion or two and even a serval and a possible cheetah. Now things (or should that be cats) are afoot again. About ten days ago, a girl wrote to the Danish natural history website “Fugle og Natur” (www.fugleognatur.dk) with her sighting of a big cat seen on a golf course north of the Danish capital Copenhagen. Unfortunately her sighting was three weeks old at the time, so chances of finding tracks, hairs or any other physical remains were rather small, as the exact position of the animal at the time of the sighting could not be established.
“My boyfriend and I saw a large, dark cat with a short fur and a long tail about as long as the rest of the animal. We would judge the animal to weigh something like 10-20 kg, but it was hard to be certain as it was 100 meters away. The animal looked very much like a black panther. It was seen on a golf course near Birkerød on the 22nd of June 2013 between 1730 and 1830 in the evening. We couldn’t take a photo, as the animal very quickly disappeared in some shrubs. We tried to look on the internet to identify the animal which we think looked like a panther.”
I have corresponded with the girl, and she seems very straightforward and down to earth. But as in so many cases there are problems. Especially the fact that the animal seems to be to large to be a domestic cat, but on the other hand to small to be a leopard. I have tried to visit the place of the sighting and look for physical tracks, but with no luck. I have also talked to the golf club whether any members had seen anything, but also with no luck so far. I have managed to dig up a couple of other sightings from the area from earlier this summer, but nothing definitive and nothing that can tell us what is going on.
If I learn more, I will report in it – stay tuned!