Photos to celebrate that snow leopards are no longer endangered

Snow leopards are native to Central Asia and are simply stunning felines which were up until recently listed as endangered. But the latest news has given a glimmer of hope to these exotic creatures. After an assessment was carried out by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) their status has now been upgraded to "vulnerable."

"The species still faces a high risk of extinction out in the wild and is likely still declining," stated conservationist Tom McCarthy. "Just not at the rate previously thought." What makes snow leopards highly vulnerable is their thick skin and bones, which is largely what they are hunted for. There is still major cause for concern about their survival but at least for now their new status is a step in the right direction.

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Let's hope these beautiful and exotic animals continue to live on, not only as important symbols of native culture in the region, but also because they are simply glorious creatures.

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