Snow Leopard Survey (Download PDF)

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The International Union for Conservation of Nature and natural resources (IUCN) reclassified the snow leopard from endangered to the vulnerable category in the IUCN red list on 14 September 2019. India is planning for the first time to survey on snow leopard population and its geographical range.

Snow Leopard Survey Population and its Habitat

Snow Leopard Survey Population and Its Habitat

Snow Leopard Survey Population and its Habitat

Snow Leopards

  • Snow leopards are the rarely sighted cats found at elevations of 3,000 - 4,500m in rocky peaks of central Asia including the Himalayas, and Russia’s remote Altai mountains.

  • These are found in the 12 countries which include Afghanistan, Bhutan, China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Russia, Nepal, Pakistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

  • In India Snow Leopards are found along the upper reaches of the Himalayan range and in J&K, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim.

  • They have gone from “very high risk” to “high risk” of extinction in the wild. Snow Leopard were Listed as endangered by IUCN in 1972.

  • To consider as endangered there must be fewer than 2,500 mature snow leopards and they must be experiencing a high rate of decline.

  • Being in vulnerable category, the species has fewer than 10,000 breeding animals left with the population decline at least 10 % over three generation.

  • Present population globally varies from 4000 - 8500.

  • Conservation status in India: Listed under the scheduled 1 of the wildlife (protection) Act, 1972.

Project Snow Leopard

  • This project was launched in 2009 for strengthening wildlife conservation in Himalayan high altitudes.

  • The states include Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh.

  • It aims at promotion of knowledge based on adaptive conservation framework which also involves the local communities.

  • Snow leopards are given the same protection as Tiger, under scheduled 1 of the wildlife (protection) Act, 1972.

Threats to Snow Leopards

  • Development activities like road construction and human settlements in the habitat area are some of factors pose to thread to the species.

  • Poaching is another major challenge for the protection of snow leopard for their fur and skin. The bones & other body parts of snow leopard used in the traditional Asian medicines.

  • Climate change is another major threat for Snow Leopards.

- Published/Last Modified on: November 15, 2019

Environment/Ecology

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