A female snow leopard was released back into the wild in northwest China this week after receiving care for a respiratory tract infection. She hesitated a few seconds after the cage was opened, then rushed to the woods without looking back at the people in the wildlife protection group who had taken care of her since she was found 6 weeks ago. “She was exhausted and panting when she was found. We believed she was too sick to hunt from an infection and so she came into the village to look for food,” said Zhao Chongxue, a researcher with the Gansu Endangered Animal Research Center. Staff added medicine to food and water for the snow leopard for 10 days essentially curing her, Zhao added.
The animal is listed as endangered in China, the same level as the giant panda. Full article Snow Leopard Network.
A good news story, let’s hope the local population can help protect her from poachers who may have been following the news. According to the Research Center staff, the area where they released her is ideal snow leopard habitat, sparsely populated and a lot of prey species.