“Endangered snow leopard helped by native herders”

The Snow leopard helped by citizen conservationists

The mountains of bordering Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and China part of the ‘Mountains of Central Asia’ are a biodiversity hot spot covering 93 percent of Tajikistan land area and are home

Snow covered mountain home of snow leopard

Snow covered Tajikistan's mountains are home ofthe rare elusive snow leopard

to a vast number of plant and animal species, including the Marco Polo sheep, endangered snow leopard and Siberian ibex. Its seemingly endless beautiful landscapes include snowcapped peaks and wild fruit and nut forests.

However, 90 percent of the forests have disappeared in the past 100 years in this region, causing massive soil erosion and increased risk of landslides.

Uncontrolled hunting legal and illegal for meat and trophies is also depleting prey populations. Livestock grazing destroys the grasslands, further threaten Tajikistan’s wildlife. Overgrazing decreases the food supply for the wild sheep and goats that are the snow leopard’s main prey.

As humans push ever further into mountainous areas with their livestock, the snow leopard’s (Uncia uncia or Panthera uncia) habitat is degraded and fragmented. This situation also increases conflict with local people, because snow leopards are more likely to kill domestic livestock when their natural prey is scarce.

The snow leopard

The snow leopard

Lack of awareness, policy, and implementation hamper the protection of these endangered species. The government of Tajikistan can cover barely 10 percent of the budget needed for adequate conservation.

Your help is urgently needed to support the citizen reeducation and economic development programs.

Effective conservation citizen programs depend on the support of the local impoverished herders in snow leopard areas, but many are work very hard to provide for their families and have little time to devote to protecting any other animal species. The Snow Leopard Trust helps leopards and herders coexist while educating the native folk on the importance of the snow leopard to their habitat. The education is helping slow the killing of these animals, but when poaching feeds more mouths than good deeds or caring for the snow leopards choices are difficult.

snow leopard cub

snow leopard cub

Financial programs are being encouraged to help develop the family income so they may help protect their endangered animals and environment more.

1. Turning raw wool into handicrafts makes herders into artisans and improves the lives of rural families.

2. Livestock Insurance Program works with local herders to find solutions to the economic damage arising from loss of livestock to predators.

3. Livestock Vaccination Program helps reduces livestock loss to disease helps local herders tolerate living with predators like snow leopards.

The Snow Leopard Trust has a snow leopard comprehensive free hand science curriculum is available by clicking here.

For more cat facts click here.

To help the snow leopard click here.

To adopt a snow leopard.

Listen to how this big cat sounds.

Resources

Excerpts courtesy of snowleopardtrust.org

Excerpts courtesy of http://www.xinjiangsnowleopards.org

Excerpts courtesy of http://www.fauna-flora.org/qinghai.php

Image 1, Tajikistan Mountains courtesy of http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/archive/d/d3/20080913045630!Tajik_mountains_edit.jpg
Image 2. adult snow leopard courtesy of http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a7/Uncia_uncia.jpg

Image 3. Snow leopard cub courtesy of http://www.ethioplanet.com/news/wp-content/plugins/wp-o-matic/cache/2bea0_96548312.jpg

http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1330/1288744567_69eb03b7e3_o.jpghttp://www.flickr.com/photos/sdaggar/

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1 Comment

  1. October 12, 2009 at 8:27 pm

    [...] See the original post here:  “Endangered snow leopard helped by native herders” « Nature's … [...]


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