Snow leopard numbers can be read in their scat


A genetic test specific to endangered snow leopards can pin down vital information on their numbers and diversity from the animals’ faeces. What is more, a pilot study has found that some faeces thought to come from snow leopards were actually from foxes or lynx – a disturbing sign that estimates of snow leopard numbers may be far too high. Some 4000 to 7000 snow leopards are thought to remain in high-altitude regions of central Asia. The area’s inaccessibility makes the population hard to count. Camera-trap surveys can record individuals,
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