Russian specialists ready to take part in leopard count in North Korea

Russian specialists ready to take part in leopard count in North Korea

4 September 2015

Environment Minister Sergei Donskoi has instructed relevant agencies to hold consultations with the Ministry for the Development of the Russian Far East on the possibility of launching a joint Amur tiger and Far Eastern leopard count in North Korea. Mr Donskoi's instructions followed a roundtable meeting on the results of the Amur tiger count in Russia during the 2014/2015 winter season. The meeting took place on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum on 4 September 2015.


Speaking at the roundtable, Tatyana Baranovskaya, director of Land of the Leopard National Park, outlined prospects for a tiger and leopard count in cooperation with North Korean experts. This summer, the first statistical data on the Amur tiger and Far Eastern leopard populations in China finally became available, but it is still unclear how many rare wild cats there are in North Korea, she said.


"Reports suggest that tigers and leopards have been spotted in that country. For a fuller assessment of their populations and how they could be preserved, it is necessary to know their exact boundaries. That's why a joint count with North Korean specialists is so important for us today," Tatyana Baranovskaya pointed out.


According to the 2015 winter count, there are at least 523 Amur tigers and around 70 Far Eastern leopards living in the wild in the Far Eastern Federal District.