Stop Amur Leopard Poaching and Habitat Loss

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The Amur Leopard is listed as CRITICALLY ENDANGERED on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Recently, there are ONLY 80 Amur Leopards still alive. The Amur Leopard is the most endangered wild cat on the planet. The serious decline of the Amur Leopards population is the result of poaching, deforestation and loss of habitat due to fires. 

The Amur leopard is important ecologically, economically and culturally. Conservation of its habitat benefits other species, including Amur tigers and prey species like deer. It establishes a balance in the ecosystem for the regions it .  With the right conservation efforts, we can bring them back and ensure long-term conservation of the regions.

The Amur Leopard, also known as the Far Eastern Leopard, is a big cat that inhabits parts of southeastern Russia (Primorye Krai) and northeastern China (Jilin and Heilongjiang). A few leopards have also been spotted in northern Korea. The Amur leopard lives farther north than any other leopard. It is the only leopard subspecies that has adapted to a cold climate.

The leopard’s have their own territories that can be 20 to 120 miles long , usually in a river basin. Wild Amur leopards usually live between 10 to 15 years. Captive Amur Leopards can live as long as 20 years. Amur Leopard preys on musk deer, roe deer, moose, wild pig, Manchurian wapiti (elk), hare, badger, fowl, mice and at times, young black bears. The Amur Leopard usually hunts at night.

Female leopards start breeding between 3-4 years old. They have about one to four cubs during the spring or early summer. Most recently, the average size of a litter has only been two kittens. The young cats leave their mothers within 1 to 1 ½ years of age. The Amur Leopard kittens survival rates are about one month. Besides the poaching of the leopards and their prey, other predators are killing the kittens for food as the mother goes out to hunt. This again, creates a great problem in increasing their numbers. We need to help these kittens survive to increase the numbers.

Besides struggling to keep their babies alive and habitat destruction, the other greatest threat is the poaching.  Locals of both countries kill the amur leopard to eliminate prey competition. The bones of the Amur Leopard are desired and used in traditional Chinese medicine despite having no medicinal properties. While the Russian use the fur for carpets and clothing along with selling the fur on the black market. A leopard skin on the us market is 500-1,000 us dollars.  

Asking the governments and local authorities to seek other resources, stop deforestation and destruction, create laws to protect these leopards and support law enforcement teams to protect and enforce the laws will save the amur leopard.  Signing this petition helps us persuade and create action to save this precious cat from extinction.  Act now to make a difference.

 

 



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