• IUCN Status
  • Population
    Estimated 4,080-6,590 left in the wild
  • Diet
    Carnivore eating ibex, marmots and wild sheep
  • Group
    Snow leopards are solitary animals and there is no name for a group
  • Size
    Height: 60cm, Length: 1.2-1.5m
  • Continent
    Central Asia
  • Lifespan
    10-12 years in the wild
  • Weight
    30-75 kg
  • Habitat
    Snow leopards live in high-altitude mountainous terrain, usually at elevations of 3,000-4,500m. They prefer steep, broken landscapes such as cliffs, rocky outcrops and ravines
  • Scientific Name
    Panthera uncia

Meet the Snow Leopard


This species is carnivorous. Individuals will hunt and eat  small mammals such as ibex, marmots and voles, as well as larger prey items such as Himalayan blue sheep.

Their powerful back legs allow snow leopards to leap over 30 feet through the air.

This species is native to the mountainous regions of Central Asia, individuals are often found living on steep rocky slopes. They also inhabit areas of Grassland or scrubland.

Individuals reach sexual maturity at around 2-3 years of age. Mating normally occurs in the late winter and after approximately 90-100 days females give birth to up to 5 cubs. This normally happens in a den lined with the mothers shed fur.




Aruna at Wolds Wildlife Park

Did you know?

Would you like to learn more about this Himalayan beauty, then read on......

How long is Snow Leopards tail?up arrow

A snow leopard's tail can reach up to 80-105cm long, which is thought to help with balance and it also wraps around its body for added warmth.

What noise do snow leopards make?down arrow

Snow leopards make sounds similar to those made by other large cats, including a purr, mew, hiss, growl, moan, and yowl. However, snow leopards cannot roar due to the physiology of their throat, and instead make a non-aggressive puffing sound called a ‘chuff'.

Their main call can be described as a piercing yowl that is so loud it can be heard over the roar of a river.

What adaptations do snow leopards have to help with living in extreme cold climates?down arrow

Snow leopards have spotted white-greyish fur that keeps them well insulated in cold weather – it can be 5cm long on their back and sides and almost 12cm long on their belly.

Snow leopards have wide, fur-covered paws that serve as natural snowshoes and protect it from the cold, in addition they also have short legs and short, rounded ears that help prevent the loss of body heat. 

A snow leopard's nasal cavities are extra wide to help heat the air they breathe before it reaches their lungs.

What colour are a snow leopards eyes?down arrow

Snow leopards have blue, grey eyes, opposed to yellow or orange like most other big cats

What other names are snow leopards known as?down arrow

A snow leopard has a fur coat that is camouflaged to blend into their natural habitat, this along with their reclusive behavior and uncanny ability to disappear into their environment have earned them the description of ‘shape-changing mountain spirits' or 'ghosts of the mountain'.