State authorities have requested a pair of snow leopards from the Darjeeling Snow Leopard Breeding Center for a conservation project.
In 2004, a male snow leopard, Subhash, and a female partner, Sapna, were brought to the nature park from Darjeeling under an exchange program. However, the wild cats were siblings, and the breeding program couldn't be initiated as they belonged to the same bloodline. Three years later, Sapna died of disease. Officials said they were looking for a companion, even from abroad, contacting zoos in Finland, Holland and the US. Unluckily, none of them could send a "girlfriend" for Subhash.
The snow leopard is listed as endangered on the international Red List of Threatened Species, and is facing extinction due to fur poaching and habitat loss. The Government of India is undertaking the Snow Leopard Conservation Project, worth $758,000. The program entails restoring the snow leopard's habitat and monitoring the range and behavior of snow leopards through camera traps and radio collars.