Leopard in India

Leopard in India mind map
Recent News
Government of India and non-profit organisations release report
January 30, 2024
To assess the snow leopard population in India
Provide crucial insights for conservation efforts
First-ever comprehensive scientific exercise
Snow Leopard Population Assessment in India (SPAI) Program
Estimated snow leopard population
718 individuals
Legal protection
Only 34% of habitat legally protected
Need for Snow Leopard Cell
At Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun
Long-term population monitoring
Organised studies
Consistent field surveys
Periodic population estimation
Every fourth year
Revised assessment
From earlier estimate of 400-700
Snow leopard habitat
120,000 sq km in India
States and UTs covered
Jammu and Kashmir
Himachal Pradesh
Arunachal Pradesh
Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change
Wildlife Institute of India (WII)
National coordinator for SPAI
Nature Conservation Foundation, Mysuru
World Wildlife Fund for Nature-India
Camera traps installed
1,971 locations
Captured 241 unique individuals
70% of potential habitats
Provides crucial data for conservation
Highlights need for dedicated efforts in unprotected areas
Majority of habitat remains unprotected
Requires dedicated monitoring and conservation efforts
Way Forward
Establish dedicated Snow Leopard Cell
Adopt periodic population estimation approach
Formulate effective conservation strategies

The report on the status of snow leopards in India, released on January 30, 2024, marked a significant scientific achievement as it presented the first-ever comprehensive assessment of the snow leopard population in the country. With an estimated count of 718 snow leopards, the study underscored the critical need for dedicated conservation efforts, given that only a third of their habitat is under legal protection. Spearheaded by the Wildlife Institute of India, with the support of the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, the Nature Conservation Foundation, Mysuru, and the World Wildlife Fund for Nature-India, this initiative highlights the importance of establishing a dedicated Snow Leopard Cell for long-term monitoring and conservation strategies. The assessment, which utilized camera traps across various states and union territories, not only provides crucial data for preserving these vulnerable species but also calls for periodic population estimation to address threats effectively and ensure their survival​​​​.

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