International Tiger Forum to Discuss Conservation of Amur Leopard

Фото: Светлана Горбатых, участница фотоконкурса РГО "Самая красивая страна"
Фото: Светлана Горбатых, участница фотоконкурса РГО "Самая красивая страна"

On September 5, Vladivostok will host a special session “Conservation of the Amur Leopard” as part of the 2nd International Tiger Forum. It will discuss the state of the wild population of this rare predator in Russia and China, the plans to increase it, as well as the current problems of animal protection, and the role of environmental education in this activity.

Experts from the Russian Ministry of Natural Resources, Land of the Leopard National Park, the Lazovsky Reserve, environmental institutions of the PRC, as well as one of the "guardians of the leopard" singer Dima Bilan, will speak at the session.

The 2nd International Tiger Forum will be held on September 5 at Far Eastern Federal University on Russky Island on the first day of the Eastern Economic Forum. The event will bring together country leaders, representatives of relevant ministries and departments, scientists, international experts in the field of protection of endangered animal species. Among the tasks of the forum are the consolidation of mechanisms for regular information exchange, effective international coordination of actions, as well as the designation of new guidelines for cooperation.

Compared to the total world population of tigers, the number of leopards on the planet is much higher. This is due to the high adaptability of the spotted cats. However, this rule does not apply to the rarest subspecies of the leopard – the Amur leopard. Its representatives live only in the Primorye Territory and in the northern border regions of China. Currently, 121 adult specimens of the Amur leopard have been recorded in Russia, and, despite a significant increase in numbers in recent years, the problem of preserving this cat remains relevant.

The issue of the conservation of the Amur leopard will be the central topic of a number of other forum events. Among them is the signing ceremony of the tripartite agreement between the Federal State Budgetary Institution "Land of the Leopard", the A.N Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and the Autonomous Non-Profit Organization “Far Eastern Leopards”. It is expected that the document will become an important milestone in the study of the rarest cat, as well as in further work to restore its population. In particular, the general plans of the three organizations include the development of a program for the reintroduction of the Amur leopard to the Ussuriysky Reserve.

Popularization of work on the conservation of the Amur leopard is the main subject of another agreement, which will also be signed as part of the 2nd International Tiger Forum. The document on cooperation is planned to be signed by the Autonomous Non-Profit Organization "Far Eastern Leopards" and "Russkaya Mediagruppa" JSC (eng. “Russian Media Group”) – one of the largest media holdings in Russia. The signing of this document will open up new opportunities to draw attention to the problem of protecting the planet's rarest big cat, including with the support of show business stars.

The Russian Geographical Society has been actively involved in projects to restore the population of the Amur leopard since 2011. Our goal is to study the state of the predator populations and its main prey, ungulates, as well as to develop the infrastructure of specially protected natural areas within its range.