The Snow Leopard is perhaps the world’s most elusive cat – and only a lucky few ever get to see them in their natural habitat. Found high up in the mountainous landscapes of the Himalayas (central Asia), these beautiful cats differ in several ways to their African and Asian counterparts; 1). They weigh slightly less, generally between 35-55kg’s, 2). They live high up in mountainous central Asia (4000 metres), 3). They have thicker fur due to living in colder environments, 4). Their fur is grey in colour to blend into the surrounding grey, rocky landscape.
They have also adapted in other ways to their unique environments. Snow Leopards have much larger paws that allow them to easily cope with snow and ice conditions. They also have exceptionally long tails, that aid in balance when racing across the steep rocky terrain, and longer legs, that allow them to jump up to 15 metres (50 feet). Lastly, their wide noses warm the cold air before it enters into their lungs.
Their prey includes both domestic and wild animals. In some areas, this has resulted in conflict with farmers and cattle owners. Their natural prey includes species such as ibex and bharal (also known as blue sheep).