Snow leopards in Mongolia

Some 500-1,000 snow leopards are thought to stil live in Mongolia across an area of 101,000 km2, in the Mongolian and Gobi Altai and the Khangai Mountains The animal is known as the irves in Mongolian.

Snow Leopard Conservation in Mongolia

Killing of snow leopards in retribution for livestock depredation As livestock numbers in Mongolia increased rapidly during the 1990s, snow leopard predation on domestic livestock also rose.  Herders sometimes killed the offending cats in retaliation.  More recently, a series of severe winters in the early 2000s has diminished livestock herds–although this has been devastating for herders, in consequence both snow leopard predation and retaliation killings have decreased.

Researching snow leopards in Mongolia (Telegraph) Interesting article

Snow leopards face the threats of poaching, habitat loss and diminishing prey in Mongolia, but a research team is keeping tabs on the species

There arevery good reasons why the snow leopard is seldom seen. For a start there are not many of them left. In the past half-century their numbers have steadily diminished because of erosion of habitat and depletion of prey. During last winter, the worst in Mongolia for decades, some 10 million head of livestock died, and the effect on the snow leopards’ prey base (chiefly a wild goat called ibex, and argali sheep) is not yet known.

Snow Leopard Blog » Mongolia

Snow Leopard named Shonkhor, Courtesy of SLT/Panthera

The J. Tserendeleg Snow Leopard Research Center–aka, the base camp for our long-term study of snow leopards is in Mongolia’s South Gobi Province, in the Tost mountains, approximately 250 km west of the provincial capital of Dalanzadgad. This is some of the best snow leopard habitat in Mongolia.

Protecting the Snow Leopard from Poachers (NPR  radio documentary)

Mongolian wildlife biologist Munkhtsog (traditonally, Mongolians go by a single name) has been tracking snow leopards for the last 10 years. He says while the leopards are rarely seen, “they mark certain landscapes to communicate with each other, like the language of people.”

I traveled by train, plane, jeep and foot across the Gobi desert and up high into the Altaj mountains of Northwestern Mongolia to join Munkhtsog.

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