Snow leopard’s life was saved in Altai, Russia
At least one snow leopard’s life was saved by a scientist of Sailugemsky national park in the republic of Altai, Russia. During the snow leopard census, initiated and supported this year by Altai-Sayan Programme of WWF Russia and World Around You Foundation of Siberian Wellness corporation, a poacher’s wire snare set on a mountain animal trail was found by rangers.
The footage Alexey filmed with a mobile phone on the spot showed that the scientist untied the snare and destroyed it. After that Alexey set a camera trap in the area. A week after the camera captured the snow leopard walking in the area close to the trail as poachers predicted. The snow leopard was the one known to the scientist, the male snow leopard called Yunchi. The animal might have died of suffocation if he walked along the trail with a trap.
In the area not far from the spot where the poacher’s snare was found by Alexey he filmed another log which has become a famous log. The log was used by poachers to tie the wire snares in the past. The log had marks from wire being tied to it. The poachers used to hunt here but they do not do it after Sailugemsky national park was established. At the moment the area is being patrolled by the national park’s rangers. Today the camera traps register snow leopards that like to walk near the log and leave claw marks on it. For example, the family of Yuta (former Yu-1) female snow leopard with two cubs was registered last year. This March Yunchi male snow leopard visited the area.
This expedition of scientists and rangers of Sailugemsky national park to the Argut river basin was the first field trip of the snow leopard census of 2020 in Russia. The annual census this year as usual was initiated by WWF Russia and supported by World Around You foundation of Siberian Wellness corporation.
Wide –scale snow leopard census in 2020 started in mid-February in the republics of Altai, Tyva and Buryatia, key snow leopard habitats in Russia. The participants follow the regulations of the Snow leopard monitoring programme developed by WWF Russia in 2016 and use the mobile application developed in 2019.