Common Leopard | WWF
© WWF-Pakistan

Common leopard

Why they matter?
 
The common leopards are the largest predators of its ecosystem and they play an important role in maintaining its health. They keep a control on the population of herbivores and remove the unhealthy animals from its habitat. Balanced population of wild herbivores is critical to the health of forest as they can easily overgraze, which can affect forest regeneration and growth. This in turn keeps diseases from spreading and maintains population of fit and healthy wild animals.

 
Camera trap image of common leopard from Ayubia National Park

© WWF-Pakistan

What WWF is doing?

We have been involved with innovatively conserving common leopard species, addressing threats and raising awareness since 1970s. Common leopard is one of our priority species and we have launched numerous projects to ensure its survival.

Through various interventions, we have been able to carry out extensive scientific researches using camera traps, genetic analysis and radio collaring regarding food habitats, home range and population of common leopards.

Awareness raising has always been a major component of the projects; through trainings, documentaries, video clips, brochures and booklets, we have educated the local communities regarding the importance of common leopard and as a result, the killings have reduced significantly.

To compensate local farmers and ensure harmony between communities and common leopards, we have also established community-based livestock insurance schemes to reduce economic losses of the local communities.

 

Key Facts
Common name
common name

Common Leopard

Geographic place

habitat

Moist Temperate forest

Weight

weight

35 - 40 female 50 - 75 kg male

Latin name

scientific name

Panthera pardus

Endangered

status

Critically Endangered

Height

height & length

90-191 cm with a 60-110 cm tail

Main threats

Snow leopards continue to face a number of threats including habitat loss, poaching and increasing conflict with communities. And climate change is now putting the future of their mountain home at even greater risk.

Poaching: Snow leopards have long been killed for their beautiful fur, but their bones and other body parts are also used in Traditional Asian Medicine. And the illegal trade in snow leopard parts appears to be increasing.

Conflict with communities: Herders sometimes kill snow leopards in retaliation for attacking their livestock. And the decline in the leopard’s natural prey - due to hunting, competition from increasing livestock herds, and habitat loss - is forcing them to rely more on livestock for food and increasing the risk of retaliatory killings.

Shrinking home: Snow leopards need vast areas to thrive, but expanding human and livestock populations are rapidly encroaching on their habitat. New roads and mines are also fragmenting their remaining range.

Changing climate: All these threats will be exacerbated by the impact of climate change on the fragile mountain environment - putting the future of snow leopards at even greater risk. It will also endanger the livelihoods of local communities and the tens of millions of people living downstream of these major watersheds.
WWF
Common Leopard Collaring
© WWF-Pakistan