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The People's Podcast on Big Cat encounters in Britain. In each episode Rick Minter discusses big cat sightings with different witnesses, finding out what they saw or sensed, how they felt, and how these cases fit a bigger picture.

The People's Podcast on Big Cat encounters in Britain. In each episode Rick Minter discusses big cat sightings with different witnesses, finding out what they saw or sensed, how they felt, and how these cases fit a bigger picture.


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The People's Podcast on Big Cat encounters in Britain. In each episode Rick Minter discusses big cat sightings with different witnesses, finding out what they saw or sensed, how they felt, and how these cases fit a bigger picture.






BCC EP:61 The body of Bannockburn – big questions from a cat carcass

Paul MacDonald describes the discovery and lab testing of an apparently large cat’s carcass found near Bannockburn in 2020, and then discusses how the mapping of witness reports in south Scotland has identified key places to investigate. We then discuss the recent night-time cat footage in Larkhall, Scotland, with the houseowner Derek, asking whether it was a puma on the pathway, or a domestic cat on the fence, and how it influenced his family and neighbours. Word of the week: riparian 8...


BCC EP:60 Celtic-fringe cat & the panther of the peat bog

Author Nick Albert wrote about sensing and then seeing a black panther near his family’s West of Ireland home in his series of books Fresh Eggs and Dog Beds – we delve into those incidents with Nick in this episode, and we also hear from Dave, who had a black panther cross the road in front of him near peat cuttings in County Kilkenny in August 2021, coincidentally on his way to collect fresh eggs! Word of the week: aclaíocht 24 September 2021


BCC EP:59 Panther chat in the pub – making sense of British big cats

Three guests chat through their big cat sightings at a Herefordshire pub – Dave D watched a panther jump a gate back in 1996, Sam saw a panther on the edge of the Brecon Beacons in 2018, and he may have snapped a grainy trail-cam photo of a lynx, while Dave Starkey updates us on his big cat novel Tonmawr and a possible sequel, following his south Wales sighting. They discuss how they strive to understand more about the animals they encountered… Words of the week: spectral sensitivity 10...


BCC EP:58 The dawn panther - window shopping in Stroud

Tom re-lives his close encounter with a black leopard like cat near Stroud town centre in 2015, and his sighting of a similar looking cat which stopped the traffic when he was driving up a Cotswold hill in 2016. Rick and Tom also discuss some of the notable big cat reports in Gloucestershire during 2021. Word of the week: Corinium 28 August 2021


BCC EP:57 Wexford’s wandering panther – the beast at the bottom of the garden

On 1st August near Wexford, Ireland, Lar filmed a large black animal wandering past his house in the neighbouring field – still raw with emotion speaking on the podcast, he explains how he quickly sensed it was a large black panther, how he feels as a father of young kids, and how the Ireland big cats Facebook group has helped him assess the whole experience. Lar also explains why he thinks this could have been a recently escaped big cat. Word of the week: beithioch 13 August 2021


BCC EP:56 Panthers east & panthers west

Mark a Suffolk taxi driver explains his close up sighting of a black panther one evening, and how he now gets reports from customers about the topic, while Jo, a town councillor from Dolgellau, recounts her two sightings of a black panther in mid-north Wales. Both guests relay other snippets on local big cats they’ve heard from friends and contacts. Word of the week: Eryri 1 August 2021


BCC EP:55 Shropshire stakeout – big cats and nature’s night world

James guides us through the forest environment at night in deepest Shropshire, keeping watch for the eye shine, movement and vibes of a big cat… Word of the week: habitat 17 July 2021


BCC EP:54 Awakening the Pleistocene predators - a deep history of big cats in Britain

Zoologist Darren Naish explores the traits of larger cats in Britain and Europe from the Pleistocene times, and considers lessons for rewilding and the adaptations of any large cats in Britain now, whatever their origins. Twitter link for our guest Darren Naish: On the Prowl book discussed in the episode: Word of the week: tetrapod 3 July 2021


BCC EP:53 Chance encounters - while deer stalking, dog walking & wild camping…

Our three guests have each witnessed big cats north of London in and around Hertfordshire and Essex – Matt encountered a black leopard on land where he is a deerstalker, while Andrew was awoken from his hammock in the night by his dog sensing a big cat, and Simon viewed a black panther when walking his dogs in Epping Forest. And Simon’s wife was a sceptic until they chanced upon something important when travelling in Scotland… Words of the week: wicked problem 19 June 2021


BCC EP:52 Black in the night – filming Kenya’s panther

British wildlife photographer Will Burrard-Lucas explains his techniques for filming wild animals up close, including his specially designed Beetlecam, and he re-lives the process of photographing a male black leopard in Kenya with his custom-built camera traps. We also talk about his recent black leopard book and the highlights amongst other wildlife he has captured on camera. Words of the week: shadow spots 6 June 2021


BCC EP:51 Island hideout – the fugitive panther

Our guest Anne ran a stud farm on Anglesey where a black panther frequented her land for over a decade - she had detailed sightings of the cat stalking, experienced close encounters at night, and had armed vigilantes on her land in search of the animal. Anne explains the main events and describes her mix of emotions when living alongside a North Wales panther. We also consider an unusual type of wild prey that any big cats on Anglesey could be taking. Words of the week: diet analysis 23...


BCC EP:50 Lions, leopards and a lost tribe – South African secrets

In our extended 50th edition, Gareth Patterson from South Africa offers highlights from his experience living with lions, tracking elusive elephants in the Knysna forest, and experiencing local leopards. Also, Gareth discusses how the Fynbos ecosystem of Knysna still keeps some deeper secrets. Audio is a little soft at times so headphones recommended. Website for our guest Gareth Patterson, containing links to his books and documentary clips on lions and elephants:...


BCC EP:49 Cornish beasts along the creeks

Andy roams the creeks of mid Cornwall and fishes local lakes – in two of his three sightings he had close calls with a panther at night, and now he follows up reports of both black and brown big cats. Our second guest Mark was secretly hoping to snap a big cat on a trail camera in North Cornwall - we hear how he got on… Big Cat Mystery outro music by special permission from Drive. Word of the week: boilies 23 April 2021


BCC EP:48 Emerald eyes from the Emerald Isle

Janet noticed the neon eyes and the shadow spots on a black leopard, highlighted in the sun, as it leapt away from her and her dogs in County Leitrim, while Donal watched a black panther lit in his headlights as he stopped in shock when driving in the Wicklow mountains. Word of the week: drumlin 9 April 2021


BCC EP:47 Kent's catnip panther

We hear from Rod who saw a big cat in 1986 during his former police work in Kent, but it wasn’t until Clare Balding’s testimony on BBC’s Ramblings in 2021 that he felt vindicated – our second guest Laura in Kent had a black panther arrive next to her in the garden at night in March 2021. She’s been advised to call 999 if it comes again… Words of the week: Iain Hunter tribute 25 March 2021


BCC EP:46 Hidden in the park - East Midlands mysteries

Mat hid in the toilets after seeing a panther on a dawn walk in a country park near Nottingham, while Tom saw what he believes was a puma seizing a fox at dusk in a country park at Leicester – Mat and Tom explain their close encounters and both describe the response of their accompanying dog. Words of the week: Occam’s razor 11 March 2021


BCC EP:45 Beasts from the East – Suffolk’s shadow cats

Matt Salusbury selects some highlights from Suffolk big cat reports, then John a landowner describes his three different sightings of a puma, a black panther, and two lynxes at play. We are then joined by Chris, who also saw the two lynxes after doubting John’s account. Words of the week: Black Shuck 26 February 2021


BCC EP:44 Creatures of Kintyre – the New Wild

Cameron Nicoll explains the ideas that shaped his film Rare Creatures, on the big cat sightings of the Kintyre peninsula, and local resident George describes his close encounter with a black panther, which his dog detected first and growled at. George views big cats as a new part of Kintyre’s identity – adding to its sense of wildness. Watch the film here... Word of the week: mystery 12 February 2021


BCC EP:43 Cockney Cats – epic tales from Epping & Essex

John takes us through several big cat sightings around Epping Forest, an ancient forest now busy with visitors on the north edge of Greater London, and we also hear from Mike who collided with a black panther driving on the A13 near the M25 in Essex. Words of the week: wood pasture 29 January 2021


BCC EP:42 Mystery in the Green Belt – Hertfordshire’s big cats

Laura describes her three black panther encounters in north Hertfordshire, each of which seemed a different cat, while Lian our second guest runs the County’s big cats Facebook group, with ongoing reports of panthers, pumas and lynx. Word of the week: exotic 15 January 2021