The Snow Leopard

The snow leopard is a large cat native to the mountain ranges of Central Asia. It lives in mainly Muslim areas like Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Pakistan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan as well as countries like Bhutan, Mongolia, Nepal and northern India. It lives in some of the highest mountain ranges including Mount Everest at altitudes from 2,700m to 6,000m.

It is extremely endangered with only about 4,000 to 7,500. It is also one of the hardest animals to spot in the wild. The snow leopard cannot roar. It is well known for its beautiful fur: a whitish-tan coat with ringed spots of dark, ashy-brown and rosettes of black. Its paws are covered with fur for protection against snow and cold and stop it from sinking in the snow. Its nose is large on the inside: as cold air is breathed in, it gets warmed in the nose before going to the lungs. It can jump the length of two buses or 14m.

The snow leopard is a national symbol for Muslim countries like Tatarstan and Kazakhstan and is found on their coat of arms.