The Anatolian Leopard, whose existence has already been proven in 4 regions of Turkey, was photographed this time with the camera trap set up by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.

According to the ministry’s statement, studies conducted by the Directorate General of Eastern Wildlife Conservation and National Parks (DKMP) for the detection and protection of the endangered Anatolian leopard in the country are continuing.

The image of the Anatolian leopard, previously proven to exist in 4 regions of Turkey, was recaptured with a camera. The ministry shared the image on its social media account, “We have again photographed the Anatolian leopard, whose existence has been proven in our country. May your generation multiply, you will always exist in this country. We will continue to watch the Anatolian leopard.” the sentences used.

Leopard action plan being prepared

Although the leopard has the largest range and food supply of the 36 cat species, it belongs to the endangered categories on the IUCN Red List worldwide.

In Turkey, the Anatolian leopard, which was killed in 1974 in the Beypazarı district of Ankara, was thought to be the last specimen of this species and extinct in the country. After the traces and signs found during the field studies of the Directorate General DKMP, the searches were started with the findings to the contrary.

As a result of work first started in a region, photos of a male leopard were reflected in the camera on August 25, 2019. Thereafter, systematic studies of data collection were initiated. Another male individual was found in a different region.

When evaluating the reports received by the Directorate General DKMP, it was found that there were leopards in at least 4 different areas.

Thereupon, the Leopard Research Unit was established to urgently determine the current and potential habitats of the Anatolian leopard with a comprehensive survey. Work has also started on the Leopard Action Plan.

During the World Biodiversity Day event, Agriculture and Forestry Minister Vahit Kirişci shared the image of the Anatolian leopard on his social media account, saying: “We have to protect them, so we will keep their habitats secret.” he said.

The Regional Action Plan will contribute

This year, on September 20-22, the first Leopard Range Countries Meeting was held in Georgia as part of the Central Asian Mammal Working Group of the Convention on Migratory Species.

Information was presented at the meeting that the Caucasian leopard (P. pardus ciccaucasica), Persian leopard (P. pardus saxicolor) and Anatolian leopard (P. pardus tulliana) that are distributed in these countries and were previously thought to be different subspecies , the same are subspecies as a result of genetic studies.

For this reason, in accordance with the rules of scientific naming, the name “P. pardus tulliana” (Anatolian leopard) was accepted as the scientific name for the subspecies common in geography, according to the rule of accepting the first given name of several names given to the same species.

A Regional Action Plan for this subspecies was also drawn up and adopted during this meeting.

It was said that the existence of a regional action plan for the Leopard Action Plan, which is being prepared in Turkey, would be very helpful.

Distribution map being created

An application has been submitted to TÜBİTAK for a project where experts from Isparta University of Applied Sciences, Bursa Technical University, Düzce University, Muğla Sıtkı Koçman University, IUCN Kedigiller Experts Group and DKMP 6th Regional Directorate provide the scientific basis for the action plan.

At the start of the project, a protocol is drawn up between the institutions involved and the work is accelerated.

The action plan aims to reconstruct the distribution map of the subspecies known as the Anatolian leopard in the country.

Investigating signs such as tracks, droppings and carrion in areas where Anatolian leopards are likely to be found, identifying individuals in these areas by interviewing local people, taking and implementing conservation and development measures, especially finding females for the future of the population are among the important topics of the action plan.

While it is not possible at this stage to speak of a regular population of leopards in Turkey, the aim is to urgently determine their current and potential habitats through a comprehensive survey.

The extinction of the leopard species tends to decrease due to population growth, industrialization and habitat destruction such as wildfires, as well as limiting factors such as over-poaching.


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