A snow leopard killed 68 domestic goats in six separate incidents, in a remote valley of Gilgit, Pakistan in one night last week. The cat got into the corrals at night in a village near the Pakistan-China border which is one of the country’s main snow leopard habitat regions.
Bodies of the animals were scattered all over the place after the incident,” said Rehman Posh, a conservationist working with the Khunjerab Village Organisation. He said the villagers were upset about the financial loss of so many dead animals.
“We have submitted our complaints. But they just come to tell us the importance of the snow leopards. They never recompense the poor herders who bear the losses,” a farmer said.
Unfortunately snow leopards attack and kill livestock when their natural wild prey is scarce and livestock numbers increase. Village numbers are growing in the mountain regions and humans now compete with snow leopards in their own habitat.
Community conservation programs can help with this type of human snow leopard conflict. Insurance schemes reimburse villagers for dead livestock and some programs help pay for better snow leopard proof livestock corrals that stop the cats from getting in. But the spread of these programs takes time and money; in the meantime it is hard on both villagers and snow leopards.
Story from The Express Tribune.