|May 30, 2019 -- Several wild animals including snow leopards have recently been seen in Qilian Mountain National Park in northwest China's Qinghai Province, according to the park administration.
May 30, 2019 -- Three snow leopards are spotted in Qilian Mountain National Park in northwest China's Qinghai Province on May 23, 2019. [Photo: Qilian Mountain National Park administration]
Three snow leopards, a mother and her two cubs, were spotted in Tianjun County in the Mongolian-Tibetan-Kazak Autonomous Prefecture of Haixi on May 23.
"The snow leopards walked slowly on the ice along the riverside. I followed them and took many photos," said Zhou Faliang, a worker in charge of monitoring the park's snow leopards.
Xiong Jiji, a photographer who participated in a wildlife inspection in Menyuan Hui Autonomous County in Haibei Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, saw a figure of an animal moving quickly in front of his vehicle on May 25. "It was chubby and yellow. I thought it was a marmot at first. But his photos showed it was a Chinese mountain cat."
Also known as the Chinese desert cat, the wild cat is endemic to western China. It was listed as a national second-class protected species in China and as vulnerable on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List. Records of this wild animal were seldom seen due to its secretive nature and small population size.
The 50,200 square kilometer Qilian Mountain National Park, one of the pilot national parks, includes 34,400 square kilometers in Gansu Province and 15,800 square kilometers in Qinghai.