On the status of Snow Leopard Panthera uncial (Schreber, 1775) in Annapurna, Nepal

S.B. Ale, B. Shrestha, R. Jackson

Abstract


We conducted a status-survey on Snow Leopard Panthera uncia and its main prey, the Blue Sheep Pseudois nayaur, in the Mustang District of Nepal’s Annapurna Conservation Area, in 2010 and 2011. Sign transects, covering a total linear distance of 19.4km, revealed an average density of 5.8 signs per kilometer, which compares with those from other Snow Leopard range countries. This also roughly corresponded with the minimum number of three adult Snow Leopards we obtained from nine remote cameras, deployed to monitor areas of c. 75km2 in extent. We obtained 42 pictures of Snow Leopards during nine capture events. We conclude that Mustang harbors at least three adult Snow Leopards, and probably more, along with a healthy Blue Sheep population (a total of 528 individuals, along 37.6km of Snow Leopard transect lines). We suggest that people-wildlife conflicts exist but that the local people tolerate Snow Leopards based on their Buddhist socio-religious values.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.11609/JoTT.o3635.5534-43

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Copyright (c) 2014 S.B. Ale, B. Shrestha, R. Jackson

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