clouded leopard, Deforestration

Clouded Leopard Hunted for Fur

The clouded leopard is the worlds most majestic animals, these majestic animals live in the trees among the forests of southeast Asia and the eastern Himalayas. There are up to 6,000 snow leopards in the wild across 12 countries, but its numbers are gradually declining, with hunting and habitat loss just some of the reasons that it is endangered.  Most cats are good climbers, but the clouded leopard is near the top of its class. These big cats can even hang upside down beneath large branches, using their large paws and sharp claws to secure a good grip. Clouded leopards also have a very sharp eyesight, and uses their long tail for balance. The clouded leopard has a stocky build and, proportionately, the longest canine teeth of any living feline. Though clouded leopards are great climbers, scientists believe that they do most of their hunting on the ground, feasting on deer, pigs, monkeys, and smaller fare such as squirrels or birds. They are aided in their hunting by the largest canine teeth (proportionate to body size) of any wild cat. The clouded leopard is found across Southeast Asia and the Himalayas in the following countries: southern China, Bhutan, Nepal, northeast India, Burma, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Cambodia, Laos, and Bangladesh. It is believed to be extinct in

Indomalaya Clouded Leopard (Neofelis nebulosa)...

Indomalaya Clouded Leopard (Neofelis nebulosa), Toronto Zoo. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Taiwan. Females give birth to a litter of one to five cubs every year, and the young leopards remain dependent upon their mother for about ten months. What harms them? You’re about to find out! Deforestation in the tropical regions of Southeast Asia is the most serious threat to the clouded leopard. The species natural habitat has been fragmented and decreasing at a rate of 10% per year since 1997. The clouded leopard is also widely hunted for its teeth and decorative pelt, and for bones for the traditional Asian medicinal trade. Clouded leopard pelts have been reported on sale in markets in China, Burma, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Nepal and Thailand. They have also been featured on the menu of restaurants in Thailand and China which cater to wealthy Asian tourists. Like many other big cat species the clouded leopard is often killed as retaliation for killing livestock. These majestic cats are disappearing fast, we need to protect them!

Check out this video:

Clouded leopard face, close up

Clouded leopard face, close up (Photo credit: Wikipedia)