||The distribution and status of large mammals was surveyed in a 15 000 km2 study area in Ladakh, India. Snow leopard Panthera uncia, wolf Canis lupus, ibex Capra ibex and bharal Pseudois nayaur have an almost continuous distribution throughout; Ladakh urial Ovis vignei, Tibetan argali Ovis ammon, wild ass Equus kiang and brown bear Ursus arctos have a limited distribution. Snow leopard prefer lower altitudes and rocky, undisturbed areas. Ibex and bharal occupy similar rocky habitats but their ranges are mostly separate, with a small area of overlap. The Ladakh urial shows signs of recovery from an earlier decline. Natural resources are widely used for fuel, fodder and grazing, but favourable factors include a low human population, low level of hunting and the existence of some uninhabited and undisturbed areas. A comprehensive Protected Area Network has been proposed.