||The status and distribution of the snow leopard Panthera uncia was investigated in two provinces of China. The cats occur over about 65,000km2 or 9% of the Qinghai Province, and in a few places along the western edge of Gansu Province. In many areas the animals have in recent decades been decimated or locally eradicated, as have their prey. Counts of wild ungulates in 9 mountain block, totalling 1375km2, known for abundant wildlife, had an average of 1.4-5.4 animals km2, principally blue sheep Psuedois nayaur, which together with marmot Marmota himalayana, represent the snow leopards main prey. Possibly 650 snow leopards survive in Qinghai but shooting and trapping of this legally protected animal and the hunting of blue sheep for local consumtion and export threaten their existence.