KENYA (CNN) — San Diego Zoo cameras in Kenya have captured a rare cat on video.
A melanistic leopard – commonly known as a black leopard or pather – looks like a normal leopard in the infrared night vision.
However, in daylight, it looks all black.
The video is an exciting find because sightings of black leopards living in this part of Kenya have never been verified by video.
The discovery may also force scientists to re-think how the gene mutation that turns regular leopards into pathers happens.
Scientists thought it occurred more frequently among leopards living in densely forested habitats, where shade is more common.
However, that wouldn’t explain why black leopards are now being spotted in Laikipia County, which is mostly arid.