Snow leop­ards make tiny steps

Warwick Daily News - - NEWS | WORLD - – INM

SNOW leop­ards have been taken off the en­dan­gered list and cat­e­gorised as vul­ner­a­ble.

But the In­ter­na­tional Union for Con­ser­va­tion of Na­ture, the global stan­dard for as­sess­ing ex­tinc­tion risk, warned that the an­i­mal still faced se­ri­ous threats.

The change comes after a three-year as­sess­ment, 45 years after the crea­ture’s list­ing as en­dan­gered.

The de­cline of the cen­tral Asia species may have slowed due to a se­ries of con­ser­va­tion pro­jects.

One of the as­ses­sors, Dr Tom McCarthy, the head of the Snow Leop­ard Pro­gram at big cat char­ity Pan­thera, said: “The species still faces a high risk of ex­tinc­tion in the wild and is likely still de­clin­ing – just not at the rate pre­vi­ously thought.”

The cats have been threat­ened by poach­ers, cli­mate change and in­fra­struc­ture de­vel­op­ments.

The re­clas­si­fi­ca­tion to “vul­ner­a­ble” means there are fewer than 10,000 breed­ing snow leop­ards left.


AT RISK: Snow leop­ards are mak­ing a re­cov­ery.

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