Snow leopard cubs learn to hunt

Snow leopard cubs learn to hunt

27 October 2014

A research expedition to determine the number of snow leopards living in Sayano-Shushensky Nature Reserve found that four adult snow leopards (three males and one female) and three five-month-old cubs were living in the reserve as of late October.


The cubs, born around May-June, are frequently recorded by camera traps. According to expedition head and senior researcher Viktor Lukarevsky (PhD Biology), even though the cubs are more active now, their mother still prefers to move from place to place during the safest times of the day –  early in the morning and late at night – and still tries to keep her cubs away from prying eyes. But she takes them out for hunting and survival lessons every two to three days. “These changes in their behaviour are due to the fact that the milk diet for the cubs has ended, and their mum is starting them on meat,” Lukarevsky said.


Consistent implementation of snow leopard conservation and research projects has made it possible to track almost every animal. Thus, the most recent expedition gave researchers lots of photographic documentation of the lives of snow leopards in the reserve. Researchers also collected biological samples for genetic identification of the cubs.

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