On December 6, a video of a "half-year-old snow leopard being released and lingering" sparked heated discussions on social platforms.

According to media reports, on December 4, staff from the Forestry and Grassland Bureau of Linzhou County, Lhasa City released a half-year-old snow leopard into the wild. leg.

The breeder had no choice but to pick up the snow leopard with both hands, walked up the mountain and released it.

After the video was released, some netizens questioned that a half-year-old snow leopard might not be able to survive in the wild.

  In this regard, the staff of the local Forestry and Grass Bureau said that the little snow leopard is within the monitoring range, and now it is only exercising its ability to survive in the wild.

Another staff member said, "Judging from the current three-day observation, there is no problem."

  Some experts also believe that it is prudent to rescue snow leopards from nature.

If it has been rescued, it is best to reduce artificial breeding and return it to nature as much as possible if it is possible to survive independently.

  Little snow leopard released at rescue site

  Local Forestry and Grass Bureau: It is within the scope of monitoring

  According to media reports, the snow leopard was separated from its mother when it was born, and was found by local herdsmen and sent to the township government. The township government then contacted Tenzin Tajie, a public welfare wildlife conservationist in Linzhou County, and sent him to his home for foster care.

"It was smaller than a kitten at first, but after being fed for four months, it now weighs 40 to 50 catties." Tenzin Taj said, "If the little snow leopard is kept at home for a longer period of time, its ability to survive will be even worse."

  On the afternoon of December 6, a staff member of the Wildlife Protection Bureau of the Lhasa Forestry and Grass Bureau told reporters that Linzhou County had indeed released a 6-month-old snow leopard on December 4.

The staff said that the decision to release the little snow leopard has been fully considered, and the place of release is also within the scope of monitoring, "everyone can rest assured."

"The little snow leopard is still within our monitoring range. Now it is just training its ability to survive in the wild. If it is found that it is not suitable for living in the wild, we will send it to the Lhasa Wildlife Rescue Station."

  As for the "snow leopard lingering and not leaving", the staff explained that the little snow leopard has been living with the breeder and may have developed a certain relationship.

"The title may have caused some controversy, and we're trying to get snow leopards back into the wild."

  On the morning of December 7, a staff member of the Forest and Grass Bureau of Linzhou County told reporters that the place where the little snow leopard was released was the place where it was rescued at that time, and that the place was patrolled by forest rangers and caretakers on a daily basis.

Since the little snow leopard was released, the caretakers have been observing it.

"Judging from the current three-day observation, there is no problem."

  expert analysis

  Rescue snow leopards from nature must be cautious

  It is best to release as much as possible if rescued

  Animal science blogger at station B and translator of "Wild Cats in the World" "Annals of the Animals - Saber-toothed cat" (hereinafter referred to as the saber-toothed cat) introduced that at least two conditions are required for a young snow leopard to be released into the wild: one is that it has grown The permanent canine teeth, and the second is the ability to hunt in the wild.

  Saber-toothed cat said that there is still a lack of observation records of the exact time when snow leopards grow permanent canine teeth. "From pumas of similar size, it is estimated to be about 8 months old." According to existing field observations, snow leopard cubs are about 10 weeks old. After weaning, go hunting with the mother when they are 2-4 months old, and learn to hunt when they are 6-8 months old.

"Snow leopards will prey on blue sheep and other animals larger than themselves. They need to learn skills such as locking their throats and biting off cervical vertebrae from their mothers, not relying on brute force."

  It is now generally believed in the academic circles that snow leopards can live independently when they are 18 months old, but they still move within the territory of their mothers.

"This process is called diffusion in ecology, and it will try to establish its own new territory, which means there is a buffer period after 18 months."

  Saber-Toothed Cat introduced that, in addition to "whether this little snow leopard can survive in the wild" that netizens are concerned about, they should also be cautious about "whether it is suitable for reintroduction".

He said that this little snow leopard started to live with humans in about two months, because it has been fed by humans, and it is easy for the little snow leopard to associate food with humans. Sex will increase greatly, and it is easy to develop into a habitual offender who preys on livestock."

Saber-toothed cat expressed its approval of the local Forestry and Grass Bureau's practice of "continuously monitoring the activities of little snow leopards".

  "The best rescue and release method is to provide a close-to-wild environment for humans to provide food, but not directly contact the cubs, so that they can explore their own hunting methods." Saber-toothed cat suggested.

  Xu Yanjun, head of the Migratory Species Working Group of the China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation, believes that it is prudent to rescue snow leopards from nature.

Some reports say that when snow leopard cubs are found, they are picked up and "rescued". In fact, this method may not be appropriate, because the mother leopard may be very anxious when she returns from hunting and finds her cubs have been taken away.

If it has been rescued, it is best to reduce artificial breeding and return it to nature as much as possible if it is possible to survive independently.

  "The general principle is to respect the laws of nature, the natural selection of biological evolution, and the law of survival of the fittest. Under this principle, the first principle followed by wild conservation volunteers is that no human interference is the best protection." Xu Yanjun said.

  The reporter noticed that the "Administrative Measures for the Containment and Rescue of Wild Animals" issued by the State Forestry and Grassland Administration came into effect on January 1, 2018.

Among them, Article 10 stipulates: For wild animals that are in good physical condition, do not need to take further treatment measures, or recover after treatment, and have the ability to survive in the wild, wild animal shelters and rescue institutions shall, in accordance with relevant regulations, select wild animals that are suitable for the survival of the wild animals. The environment is released into the wild.

  Chengdu Commercial Daily-Red Star News reporter Song Xinze Lanjing Intern Wu Yiyang (Source: Chengdu Commercial Daily)