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Author (up) Bagchi, S., Sharma, R. K., Bhatnagar, Y.V.
Title Change in snow leopard predation on livestock after revival of wild prey in the Trans-Himalaya Type Journal Article
Year 2020 Publication Wildlife Biology Abbreviated Journal
Volume Issue Pages 1-11
Keywords arid ecosystems, diet analysis, human-wildlife conflict, Panthera, predator, rangeland
Abstract Human–wildlife conflict arising from livestock-losses to large carnivores is an important challenge faced by conservation. Theory of prey–predator interactions suggests that revival of wild prey populations can reduce predator’s dependence on livestock in multiple-use landscapes. We explore whether 10-years of conservation efforts to revive wild prey could reduce snow leopard’s Panthera uncia consumption of livestock in the coupled human-and-natural Trans-Himalayan ecosystem of northern India. Starting in 2001, concerted conservation efforts at one site (intervention) attempted recovery of wild- prey populations by creating livestock-free reserves, accompanied with other incentives (e.g. insurance, vigilant herding). Another site, 50km away, was monitored as status quo without any interventions. Prey remains in snow leopard scats were examined periodically at five-year intervals between 2002 and 2012 to determine any temporal shift in diet at both sites to evaluate the effectiveness of conservation interventions. Consumption of livestock increased at the status quo site, while it decreased at the intervention-site. At the intervention-site, livestock-consumption reduced during 2002–2007 (by 17%, p = 0.06); this effect was sustained during the next five-year interval, and it was accompanied by a persistent increase in wild prey populations. Here we also noted increased predator populations, likely due to immigration into the study area. Despite the increase in the predator population, there was no increase in livestock-consumption. In contrast, under status quo, dependence on livestock increased during both five-year intervals (by 7%, p=0.08, and by 16%, p=0.01, respectively). These contrasts between the trajectories of the two sites suggest that livestock-loss can potentially be reduced through the revival of wild prey. Further, accommodating counter-factual scenarios may be an important step to infer whether conservation efforts achieve their targets, or not.
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Call Number Serial 1623
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Author (up) Wegge, P., Shrestha, R., Flagstad, O.
Title Snow leopard Panthera uncia predation on livestock and wild prey in a mountain valley in northern Nepal: implications for conservation management Type Journal Article
Year 2012 Publication Wildlife Biology Abbreviated Journal
Volume 18 Issue 10.2981/11-049 Pages 131-141
Keywords bharal, blue sheep, diet, genetic sampling, naur, Panthera uncia, predation, Pseudois nayaur, scat analysis, snow leopard, wildlife conflict
Abstract The globally endangered snow leopard Panthera uncia is sparsely distributed throughout the rugged mountains in Asia.

Its habit of preying on livestock poses a main challenge to management. In the remote Phu valley in northern Nepal, we

obtained reliable information on livestock losses and estimated predator abundance and diet composition from DNA

analysis and prey remains in scats. The annual diet consisted of 42%livestock. Among the wild prey, bharal (blue sheep/

naur) Pseudois nayaur was by far the most common species (92%). Two independent abundance estimates suggested that

there were six snow leopards in the valley during the course of our study. On average, each snow leopard killed about one

livestock individual and two bharal permonth. Predation loss of livestock estimated fromprey remains in scats was 3.9%,

which was in concordance with village records (4.0%). From a total count of bharal, the only large natural prey in the area

and occurring at a density of 8.4 animals/km2 or about half the density of livestock, snow leopards were estimated to

harvest 15.1% of the population annually. This predation rate approaches the natural, inherent recruitment rate of this

species; in Phu the proportion of kids was estimated at 18.4%. High livestock losses have created a hostile attitude against

the snow leopard and mitigation measures are needed. Among innovative management schemes now being implemented

throughout the species’ range, compensation and insurance programmes coupled with other incentive measures are

encouraged, rather than measures to reduce the snow leopard’s access to livestock. In areas like the Phu valley, where the

natural prey base consists mainly of one ungulate species that is already heavily preyed upon, the latter approach, if

implemented, will lead to increased predation on this prey, which over time may suppress numbers of both prey and

predator.
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Area Expedition Conference
Notes Approved no
Call Number SLN @ rakhee @ Serial 1386
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