Sat, 27 Feb 2021

Snow leopard spotted in NW China nature reserve

Xinhua
19 Jan 2021, 17:30 GMT+10

LANZHOU, Jan. 19 (Xinhua) -- A snow leopard cub was captured by an infrared camera in a nature reserve in northwest China's Gansu Province, the reserve administration said Monday.

The staff found video footage of the cub leaping over an infrared camera at an altitude of about 2,700 meters, said Ma Yongsheng, a staffer with the Gansu Annanba Wild Camel National Nature Reserve.

As a flagship species in the region, the geographical distribution and population of the rare leopard are among the key indicators to evaluate the local ecosystem and biodiversity.

"The sight of the cub in the reserve suggests that there is more than one snow leopard living in the area," Ma said, adding that it also reflects the continuous improvement of the ecological environment in the reserve.

Since May 2020, a total of 40 infrared cameras have been set up in the reserve to dynamically monitor wildlife activities and species.

Snow leopards are under China's highest national-level protection and are listed as vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The species mainly inhabit the Himalayas in central and southern Asia at an altitude of 2,500 to 4,500 meters.

In China, they can be seen in the alpine areas in southwestern and northwestern regions including Tibet, Sichuan, Xinjiang, Gansu and Inner Mongolia.

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