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Li, J., Yin, H., Wang, D., Jiagong, Z., Lu, Zhi. (2013). Human-snow leopard conflicts in the Sanjiangyuan Region of the Tibetan Plateau. Biological Conservs, (166), 118–123.
Abstract: Conflicts between humans and snow leopards are documented across much of their overlapping distribution
in Central Asia. These conflicts manifest themselves primarily in the form of livestock depredation
and the killing of snow leopards by local herders. This source of mortality to snow leopards is a key conservation concern. To investigate human-snow leopard conflicts in the Sanjiangyuan Region of the Tibetan Plateau, we conducted household interviews about local herders’ traditional use of snow leopard
parts, livestock depredation, and overall attitudes towards snow leopards. We found most respondents
(58%) knew that snow leopard parts had been used for traditional customs in the past, but they claimed
not in the past two or three decades. It may be partly due to the issuing of the Protection of Wildlife Law
in 1998 by the People’s Republic of China. Total livestock losses were damaging (US$ 6193 per household
in the past 1 year), however snow leopards were blamed by herders for only a small proportion of those
losses (10%), as compared to wolves (45%) and disease (42%). Correspondingly, the cultural images of
snow leopards were neutral (78%) and positive (9%) on the whole. It seems that human-snow leopard
conflict is not intense in this area. However, snow leopards could be implicated by the retaliatory killing
of wolves. We recommend a multi-pronged conservation program that includes compensation, insurance
programs, and training local veterinarians to reduce livestock losses.
Lutz, H., Hofmann-Lehmann, R., Fehr, D., Leutenegger, C., Hartmann, M., Ossent, P., et al. (1996). Liberation of the wilderness of wild felids bred under human custody: Danger of release of viral infections. Schweizer Archiv fuer Tierheilkunde, 138(12), 579–585.
Abstract: There are several felidae amongst the numerous endangered species. Means of aiding survival are the reintroduction to the wild of animals bred under the auspices of man and their relocation from densely populated to thinly populated areas. It is unlikely that the dangers of such reintroduction or relocation projects have been examined sufficiently in respect to the risks of virus infections confronting individuals kept in zoos or similar situations. This report presents infections may be expected to occur when relo- three examples to illustrate that accidental virus cating and reintroducing wild cats. The first example is the reintroduction of captive snow leopards. Zoo bred snow leopards may be infected with FIV, a virus infection that is highly unlikely to occur in the original hirnalayan highlands of Tibet and China. A second example is of several cases of FIP that occured in European wild cats bred in groups in captivity. The third example mentioned is the relocation of hons from East Africa where all the commonly known feline viruses are wide-spread to the Etosha National Park. In the latter, virus infections such as FIV, FCV and FPV do not occur. The indiscriminate relocation and reintroduction of the wild cats mentioned here harbours a potential of undesirable consequences.
Maheshwari, A., Sathyakumar, S. (2019). Snow leopard stewardship in mitigating human-wildlife conflict in Hemis National Park, Ladakh, India. Human Dimensions of Wildlife, , 1–5.
Abstract: Among large predators, snow leopards (Panthera uncia) and co-predators (e.g., wolves
Canis lupus, lynx Lynx lynx) often cause economic losses, engendering animosity from
local communities in the mountain ecosystem across south and central Asia (Din et al.,
2017; Jackson & Lama, 2016; Maheshwari, Takpa, Kujur, & Shawl, 2010; Schaller, 2012).
These economic losses range from around US $50 to nearly $300 per household,
a significant sum given per capita annual incomes of $250 – $400 (Jackson & Wangchuk,
2004; Mishra, 1997). Recent efforts such as improved livestock husbandry practices
(predator-proof livestock corrals – closed night shelters with covered roof with wiremesh
and a closely fitting iron or wooden door that can be securely locked at night) and
community-based ecotourism (e.g., home stays, guides, porters, pack animals, campsites)
are providing alternative livelihood opportunities and mitigating large carnivores – human
conflict in the snow leopard habitats (Hanson, Schutgens, & Baral, 2018; Jackson, 2015;
Jackson & Lama, 2016; Vannelli, Hampton, Namgail, & Black, 2019). Snow leopard-based
ecotourism provides an opportunity to secure livelihoods and reduce poverty of the
communities living in ecotourism sites across Ladakh (Chandola, 2012; Jackson, 2015).
To understand the role of snow leopard-based ecotourism in uplifting the financial profile
of local communities, mitigating large carnivore – human conflict and eventually changing
attitudes towards large carnivores in Hemis National Park, Ladakh, India, we compared
the estimated financial gains of a snow leopard-based ecotourism to stated livestock
predation losses by snow leopards and wolves.
Maheshwari, A., Takpa, J., Kujur, S., Shawl, T. (2010). An Investigation of Carnivore-Human Conflicts in Kargil and Drass Areas of Jammu and Kashmir, India. India.
Abstract: Still, there are areas from where very poor information is available on snow leopard and associated species. Keeping this in view, Kargil and Drass areas of Ladakh,Jammu and Kashmir were identified as “gaps” in available information on snow leopard. Kargil has not received much attention for wildlife studies due to its proximity to the International Boundary between India and Pakistan and resultant security implications. The only information available from the area is from a study done by Sathyakumar (2003) on the occurrence of Himalayan brown bear from Zanskar and Suru Valleys in Ladakh. But there was very poor information on the occurrence and distribution of other carnivores and conflicts with humans in Kargil. Therefore, this study was felt necessary to establish the following objectives:
1. Surveys for the occurrence and distribution of snow leopard and other large
carnivores and their prey
2. To estimate abundance of prey species
3. To study food habits of snow leopard and other carnivores based on scat analysis
4. To study the of carnivore – human conflicts
5. To study the socio-economic conditions of rural community and develop local
McCarthy, T. (1999). Snow Leopard Conservation Plan for the Republic of Mongolia.
Michel, S., Michel, T. R., Saidov, A., Karimov, K., Alidodov, M., Kholmatov, I. Population status of Heptner’s markhor Capra falconeri heptneri in Tajikistan: challenges for conservation. Flora & Fauna International, , 1–8.
Abstract: Heptner’s markhor Capra falconeri heptneri is an Endangered wild goat occurring in disjunct populations in southern Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan. Surveys to determine the total population in Tajikistan were conducted during February–April 2012. A total of 1,018 animals were observed. In most areas, which include state protected areas and family- and communitybased
conservancies, markhor populations are stable or increasing. Threats include illegal hunting, habitat degradation, competition with livestock and disease transmission. To motivate conservancies economically to protect markhor populations, trophy hunting should be permitted to accommodate the sustainable use of markhor, with revenues distributed in a transparent and equitably shared manner.
Mishra, C. (1997). Livestock depredation by large carnivores in the Indian trans-Himalaya: Conflict perceptions and conservation prospects. Environmental Conservation, 24(4), 338–343.
Abstract: Livestock depredation by the snow leopard, Uncia uncia, and the wolf, Canis lupus, has resulted in a human-wildlife conflict that hinders the conservation of these globally-threatened species throughout their range. This paper analyses the alleged economic loss due to livestock depredation by these carnivores, and the retaliatory responses of an agro-pastoral community around Kibber Wildlife Sanctuary in the Indian trans-Himalaya. The three villages studied (80 households) attributed a total of 189 livestock deaths (18% of the livestock holding) over a period of 18 months to wild predators, and this would amount to a loss per household equivalent to half the average annual per capita income. The financial compensation received by the villagers from the Government amounted to 3% of the perceived annual loss. Recent intensification of the conflict seems related to a 37.7% increase in livestock holding in the last decade. Villagers have been killing the wolf, though apparently not the snow leopard. A self-financed compensation scheme, and modification of existing livestock pens are suggested as area-specific short-term measures to reduce the conflict. The need to address the problem of increasing livestock holding in the long run is emphasized.
Mishra, C., & Fitzherbert, A. (2004). War and wildlife: a post-conflict assessment of Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor. Oryx, 38(1), 102–105.
Abstract: Prior to the last two decades of conflict, Afghanistan's Wakhan Corridor was considered an important area for conservation of the wildlife of high altitudes. We conducted an assessment of the status of large mammals in Wakhan after 22 years of conflict, and also made a preliminary assessment of wildlife trade
in the markets of Kabul, Faizabad and Ishkashem. The survey confirmed the continued occurrence of at least eight species of large mammals in Wakhan, of which the snow leopard Uncia uncia and Marco Polo sheep Ovis ammon are globally threatened. We found evidence of human-wildlife conflict in Wakhan due to livestock depredation by snow leopard and wolf Canis lupus. Large mammals are hunted for meat, sport, fur, and in retaliation against livestock depredation. The fur trade in Kabul is a threat to the snow leopard, wolf, lynx Lynx lynx and common leopard Panthera pardus.
Mishra, C., Madhusudan, M. D., & Datta, A. (2006). Mammals of the high altitudes of western Arunachal Pradesh, eastern Himalaya: an assessment of threats and conservation needs (Vol. 40).
Abstract: The high altitudes of Arunachal Pradesh,India, located in the Eastern Himalaya biodiversity hotspot, remain zoologically unexplored and unprotected. We report results of recent mammal surveys in the high altitude habitats of western Arunachal Pradesh. A total of 35 mammal species (including 12 carnivores, 10 ungulates and 5 primates) were recorded, of which 13 are categorized as Endangered or Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List. One species of primate, the Arunachal macaque Macaca munzala, is new to science and the Chinese goral Nemorhaedus caudatus is a new addition to the ungulate fauna of the Indian subcontinent. We documented peoples' dependence on natural resources for grazing and extraction of timber and medicinal plants. The region's mammals are threatened by widespread hunting. The snow leopard Uncia uncia and dhole Cuon alpinus are also persecuted in retaliation for livestock depredation. The tiger Panthera tigris, earlier reported from the lower valleys, is now apparently extinct there, and range reductions over the last two decades are reported for bharal Pseudois nayaur and musk deer Moschus sp.. Based on mammal species richness, extent of high altitude habitat, and levels of anthropogenic disturbance, we identified a potential site for the creation of Arunachal's first high altitude wildlife reserve (815 km2). Community-based efforts that provide incentives for conservation-friendly practices could work in this area, and conservation awareness programmes are required, not just amongst the local communities and schools but for politicians, bureaucrats and the army.
Mishra, C., Van Wieren S., Ketner, P., Heitkonig, I., & Prins H. (2004). Competition between domestic livestock and wild bharal Pseudois nayaur in the Indian Trans-Himalaya. Journal of Animal Ecology, 73, 344–354.
Abstract: 1. The issue of competition between livestock and wild herbivores has remained contentious. We studied the diets and population structures of the mountain ungulate bharal Pseudois nayaur and seven species of livestock to evaluate whether or not they compete for forage. The study was conducted in the high altitude Spiti Valley, Indian Trans-Himalaya.
2. We compared resource (forage) availability and bharal population structures between rangelands differing in livestock density. Forage availability was estimated by clipping the standing graminoid biomass in sample plots. Livestock and bharal population structures were quantified through annual censuses. Seasonal diets of livestock were studied by direct observations, while those of bharal were quantified through feeding
signs on vegetation.
3. We found that livestock grazing causes a significant reduction in the standing crop of forage. Graminoid availability per unit livestock biomass was three times greater in a moderately grazed rangeland compared with an intensively grazed one.
4. There was considerable diet overlap among the herbivore species. In summer, bharal, yak Bos grunniens, horse Equus caballus, cow Bos indicus, and dzomo (yak-cow hybrids) fed predominantly on graminoids, while donkey E. asinus, sheep Ovis aries, and goat Capra hircus, consumed both graminoids and herbs. The summer diet of bharal was a subset of the diets of three livestock species. In winter, depleted graminoid availability caused bharal, yak and horse to consume relatively more herbs, while the remaining livestock species fed predominantly on graminoids. Diet overlap was less in winter but, in both seasons, all important forage species in the bharal diet were consumed
in substantial amounts by one or more species of livestock.
5. Comparison of the population structures of bharal between two rangelands differing in livestock density by
c. 30% yielded evidence of resource competition. In the intensively grazed rangeland, bharal density was 63% lower, and bharal population showed poorer performance (lower young : adult female ratios).
6.Synthesis and applications High diet overlap between livestock and bharal, together with density-dependent forage limitation, results in resource competition and a decline in bharal density. Under the present conditions of high livestock density and supplemental feeding, restricting livestock numbers and creating livestockfree areas are necessary measures for conserving Trans-Himalayan wild herbivores. Mediating competitive effects on bharal through supplemental feeding is not a feasible option.