The Year of the Snow Leopard in the Chinese Year of the Sheep/Goat
A snow leopard couple in the Darvaz range of Tajikistan celebrated Valentine Day and the arrival of the Chinese Year of the Sheep/Goat by feasting on a very special goat, the markhor. 2015, declared at the 2013 Global Snow Leopard Conservation Forum, as the Year of the Snow Leopard, promises to be a good year for these elusive cats in Tajikistan, thanks to the management and conservation efforts of conservancies, both community and family-based. Capturing precious images of snow leopards on video and point and shoot cameras may become more common.
Snow Leopards in Darvaz
As I wrote in my earlier blog on “Tajikistan Brings Endangered Wild Goat From the Edge of Extinction to the Peak of Hope“, markhor conservation efforts have not only lead to an increase in the population of markhor but also to a visible increase in snow leopard numbers.
In February 2012, I watched from the Dushanbe-Khorog road on two occasions two different snow leopards hunting markhor. On February 13, 2015, in a nearby spot, rangers of the conservancies Saidi-Tagnob and M-Sayod together with Zayiniddin Amirov of the Academy of Sciences of Tajikistan watched and —> Read More Here