Snow leopard no longer endangered
BANGKOK: The elusive snow leopard — long considered endangered — has been upgraded to ‘‘vulnerable’’, though conservationists warned the new classification does not mean they are safe.
The animals still face serious challenges including poaching and loss of prey in their high Himalayan habitat.
‘‘The species still faces a high risk of extinction in the wild and is likely still declining — just not at the rate previously thought,’’ said Tom McCarthy, head of the snow leopard program at the big cat conservation group Panthera.
Snow leopards had been listed as endangered since 1972.
The reclassification followed a three-year assessment that determined there were at least 2500 mature snow leopards in the wild.