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Lions across Africa have declined to about 20,000. As few as 3,000 wild cheetahs roam Namibia and only 6,000 snow leopards remain in the Himalayas.
Big Cats Initiative has been able to support pilot programs that effectively combat the poaching, poisoning, pesticides, and habitat loss that are eradicating big cats.
know what to do to save big cats and they need your help so that they can fully implement these conservation techniques. We have not a day to lose.
A brand new blog run by us that will be dedicated to sharing the best of elephant photography along with interesting information, conservation efforts and news stories.(Above photo by VIDYO)
The Arabian leopard -
Panthera pardus nimr Native to the Arabian Peninsula.
critically endangered by the IUCN since 1996 with an effective population estimate of 250. Tentatively affirmed as a distinct subspecies by genetic analysis from a single captive leopard from Israel of south Arabian origin.
Smallest leopard subspecies.
Threats include habitat loss, population fragmentation, prey base depletion and conflict with humans.
Photo by: Andrew Spalton, Oman camera trap
The Indo-Chinese leopard -
Panthera pardus delacouri Native to Southeast Asia and southern China.
near threatened by the IUCN. High rate of melanism, particularly for those inhabiting the Malay Peninsular.
Habitat destruction from deforestation, prey base depletion and poaching for illegal trade are all major threats to their survival.
Photo shows a melanistic leopard caught on camera trap in Thailand from
The North Chinese leopard -
Panthera pardus japonensis Native to Northern China.
endangered by the IUCN, with a population estimate of 2,500. Fragmented populations found in isolated mountain ranges.
North Chinese leopards.
The Persian leopard, also known as the Caucasian leopard -
Panthera pardus ciscaucasica Native to eastern Turkey, the Caucasus mountains, northern Iran, southern Turkmenistan and parts of western Afghanistan.
endangered by the IUCN, with an estimate of 900 - 1300 remaining wild individuals. Population fragmentation is an urgent threat and there is believed to be no sub-population larger than 100 mature individuals.
Poaching, prey base depletion and human disturbance caused by military presence threaten their survival.
Tambako the Jaguar
The Amur leopard, also known as the Far Eastern, Korean or Manchurian leopard -
Panthera pardus orientalis Found today only in a small part of Russia with a possible scattered population in China.
critically endangered by the IUCN and is one of the rarest cats in the world with an estimate of no more than 35 individuals in the wild. Lost approximately 80% of their former habitat in the 1970’s - early 80’s due to logging, forest fires and land conversion.
Their coat varies in length between summer and winter from 2.5cm to 7cm long.
They have longer legs, a paler coat and wider spaced rosettes compared to other leopards.
Silvain de Munck
The Javan leopard -
Panthera pardus melas Only found on the Indonesian island of Java.
critically endangered by the IUCN, with an effective population size of 250. Habitat loss, poaching and prey base depletion all pose threats to their survival.
Melanism is relatively common among this subspecies.
Highly distinctive from mainland Asian subspecies which may indicate that it has been separate for hundreds of thousands of years.
Captive breeding and strictly enforced hunting laws are in place to hopefully prevent this leopard from going the same way as the
Photo: AP/Tatan Syuflana, Javan leopard inside a cage prior to its release into the wild.
The Indian leopard -
Panthera pardus fusca Found throughout India, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh and parts of Pakistan.
near threatened by the IUCN. May soon qualify as vulnerable due to the numerous threats they face including habitat loss, poaching and conflict with humans.
Dr. Caesar, Tadoba National Park
The Caspian tiger, also known as the Persian tiger, Turanian tiger, Mazandaran tiger, or Hyrcanian tiger -
Panthera tigris virgata
Was found throughout west and central Asia.
Listed as extinct by the IUCN.
Their mitochondrial DNA is separated by only one letter of genetic code from that of the Siberian tiger, making them virtually identical. It is theorized the Caspian and Siberian tiger populations were split sometime in the last century.
Exterminated by the Russian army to make room for farmer’s crops.
Last seen in the 1970’s.
Photo shows a captive Caspian tiger at the Berlin Zoo, 1899.
The Sumatran tiger -
Panthera tigris sumatrae Found only on the Indonesian island of Sumatra.
critically endangered by the IUCN. Smallest of all extant tiger subspecies.
Have webbed toes, making them very fast swimmers
Deforestation as a result of palm oil production is wreaking havoc on Sumatran tiger populations, as is illegal poaching and human/tiger conflict.
The Malayan tiger -
Panthera tigris jacksoni Native to the Thai-Malay Peninsula.
endangered by the IUCN. Habitat loss and poaching are the most serious threats they face.
The Malayan tiger was only identified as being a separate subspecies from the Indochinese tiger in 2004.
This tiger is the Malaysian national icon.
hubertk View more Malayan tigers.