A graphic shared on Facebook in Nigeria and South Africa shows a photo of a young leopard in the lap of its supposed rescuer.
Text reads: “This little guy was rescued after his mother was murdered by a hunter. His eyes say it all, don’t you think? If you want to ban trophy hunting forever, spread this everywhere.”
The graphic was flagged as possibly false by Facebook’s fact-checking system. Is it accurate?
Photo traced to animal rights Facebook page
Upon closer inspection, the graphic has an image credit that links to the Facebook page Creature Crusade, which describes itself as “passionate about wildlife, and preventing the senseless killing of innocent animals”.
A browse through its photo timeline confirms that Creature Crusade created the graphic, as the same font in the same colour is used in many of its images.
The original graphic posted by the Facebook page has been deleted. This is perhaps because the post was debunked by other Facebook users, who identified the leopard as belonging to a zoo in southern California in the US.
Clouded leopard from San Diego Zoo, United States
Named for its cloud-like spots, the clouded leopard is typically found in the rainforests of Southeast Asia.
The first clouded leopard arrived at the San Diego Zoo from Singapore in 1940.
Leopard Ganda ‘animal ambassador’ at zoo
The zoo also debunked the anti-trophy hunting graphic. “This clouded leopard is named Ganda … Her mother was not killed by a hunter. She was born at the Nashville Zoo and came to San Diego to participate in our animal ambassador programme.”
This #Caturday is cloudy with a chance of leopard. These beautiful cats get their name from cloud-shaped spots on their coat. Shout-out to staffer Maureen O'Duryee for this stunning capture of our #cloudedleopard ambassador, Ganda.
For publishers: what to do if your post is rated false
A fact-checker has rated your Facebook or Instagram post as “false”, “altered”, “partly false” or “missing context”. This could have serious consequences. What do you do?
Click on our guide for the steps you should follow.Publishers guide
Africa Check teams up with Facebook
Africa Check is a partner in Facebook’s third-party fact-checking programme to help stop the spread of false information on social media.
The content we rate as “false” will be downgraded on Facebook and Instagram. This means fewer people will see it.
You can also help identify false information on Facebook. This guide explains how.