Snow leopards spotted in Gorkha’s Chum Valley

- SUDIP KAINI, GORKHA
Conservationists say four snow leopards were spotted using camera traps

Aug 10, 2017-Snow leopards have been spotted at Chhekampar and Chumchet areas of Chum Valley in Gorkha. 

According to the conservationists at the Manaslu Conservation Area Project, the camera traps installed at Manaslu area captured four leopards at Somdanda, Dadhlan Chaur, Niuren and Takpa Kharka of Chhekampar recently. 

“Seventeen cameras were installed at the grasslands of Chhekampar and Chumchet. Four of the cameras had captured the movement of snow leopards,” said Narendra Lama, the project chief.

 Ajit Tumbahamfe, conservation officer of the project, said that the footages they gathered clearly indicates the presence of snow leopards in northern Gorkha.  

“We could not reach many places due to the geographical remoteness, but what we discovered with the help of just 17 cameras is very encouraging news for snow leopard conservation,” he said, adding that they had reached up to Tibetan border looking for these elusive creatures. 

Four years ago when conservationists conducted a study to track down snow leopard in Manaslu area, 

they had found snow leopard excrement at 11 places in Chum and Nubri.

 Nepal has listed snow leopard among the 26 protected mammals and has prioritised their conservation. 

As per the National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Act 1973, anyone found engaged in poaching or illegal trade of snow leopard or its body parts is subjected to a fine of Rs100,000 or five to fifteen years of imprisonment or both. The global snow leopard population is estimated to be somewhere between 4,000 and 7,000 in 12 countries--Afghanistan, Bhutan, China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

Published: 10-08-2017 07:39

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