Visit Your Local PBS Station PBS Home PBS Home Programs A-Z TV Schedules Watch Video Donate Shop PBS Search PBS

Reader's Digest World Presents The Living Edens Bhutan, The last Shangri-la
 
Migo
Marmot
Yak
Bharal
Elephant
Lammergeir Vulture
Takin
Snow Leopard
Red Panda
Black Crane
Rhino
Tiger
Golden Langurs
Drongo
Asiatic Buffalo
Hornbill
Red Fox
Wolf
Black Bear
Musk Deer
Serow
Otters
Birds
Reptiles
Snow Leopard Snow Leopard
Among the least known and elusive cats in the world, the snow leopard lives above the tree line, where it hunts. Solitary and nocturnal, the leopard's thick fur adapts it to the cold climate. That turns out to be incredibly beneficial. The snow leopard spends its time between 4,000 and 15,000 feet from winter to spring, respectively.

The elusive snow leopard can melt away unseen and invariably spots the human intruder first. Its pelt is smoky gray with a tinge of yellow, its spots forming open rosettes. Best identified by its 3 foot long tail and its size -- about that of a large dog -- snow leopards rarely descend into the coniferous forest belt and are most frequently spotted north of the main Himalaya along the Tibetan border. Ibex and bharal are primary food items in large parts of their range, but with the depletion of native ungulates, snow leopards have turned to livestock for sustenance. Strong and solitary, they nevertheless communicate to each other through signs such as scrapes -- shallow depressions scuffed in the Snow Leopardground (atop rocky promontories, along river bluffs near stream confluences and along the edge of sharp ridge lines), usually with a pile of dirt at one end. Snow leopards rarely number more than half a dozen in a particular valley.

Only 2,000 of these animals survive.


Home

Filming Shangri-La | Land of the Thunder Dragon | Animal Archive | People, Culture, History
Bhutan Resources | Teaching Bhutan | Bhutan Screen Saver | Related Links | Bhutan Credits