Over the years, snow leopards have evolved to live in some of the harshest conditions on Earth. Their white-gray coat spotted with large black rosettes blends in perfectly with the steep and rocky mountains of Central Asia.
The snow leopard’s powerful build allows it to scale great steep slopes with ease while its hind legs give it the ability to leap six times the length of its body. A long tail provides balance and agility and also wraps around the resting snow leopard as protection from the cold.
This magnificent cat has been considered the king of the mountains until recently as their population is dropping. The mountains were rich with their prey such as blue sheep, Argali wild sheep, ibex, marmots, pikas and hares. Snow leopards are found in 12 countries—including Pakistan, China, Bhutan, Nepal, India, Afghanistan, Russia, and Mongolia.
Here we look at seven magnificent pictures of snow leopards in their natural habitat.