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Polish “Snow Leopard”

Posted by: Loren Coleman on April 7th, 2009

Residents in south western Poland are living in fear of a mysterious predator blamed for attacking and killing livestock, it has been reported during the last several days of March 2009.

The animal is thought to be a rare snow leopard. It’s has been sighted numerous times around Opole and has even been recorded on a mobile phone camera by a resident of Biala village.

At another location, a driver informed the police that a big cat had jumped over his moving car while chasing a deer.

Unless it is an escaped pet and they are extremely rare in zoos let alone as privately captives, this is probably not a “snow leopard.”

The snow leopard (Uncia uncia or Panthera uncia) is a moderately large cat not found in Europe, but is native to the mountain ranges of Central Asia, especially famous as a great cat of the Himalayan mountain ranges. Of the dozen countries known to have snow leopard populations, these are Afghanistan, Bhutan, China, India, Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.

The geographic distribution stretches from the Hindukush in eastern Afghanistan and the Syr Darya through the mountains of Pamir Mountains, Tian Shan, Karakorum, Kashmir, Kunlun, and the Himalaya to southern Siberia, where the range covers the Russian Altai mountains, Sajan, Tannu-Ola mountains and the mountains to the west of Lake Baikal. In Mongolia it is found in the Mongolian and Gobi Altai and the Khangai Mountains. In Tibet, the snow leopard is found up to the Altyn-Tagh in the North, according to quick reference points in Wikipedia.

Thanks to Gavin Joth for the heads up.

The need is great, the bank is empty, there are no savings, the museum is weeks from foreclosure because the IRS bill had to be paid. That’s the way it is on April 7th, and there’s lots more, but most people just won’t believe it. Ask questions with your donation, if you want. If you can help in anyway, please do…

About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013.


5 Responses to “Polish “Snow Leopard””

  1. cryptidsrus responds:

    Interesting reports always come out of Poland and other Slavic countries. And I’m not being ironic here. Great report, Loren. Wouldn’t it be awesome if it WAS a snow leopard? :)

  2. Kronprinz_adam responds:

    I suggest, an Eurasian lynx, (Lynx lynx), maybe? It occurs in Russia and Poland.

  3. kittenz responds:

    I, also, think that a lynx is the most likely cat to be seen in the wild in that area.

  4. sschaper responds:

    Does it ever happen that bob-tailed cats like bobcats, lynx and manx ever have a regular long tail? I suppose it would matter if it is a damaged gene or a turned off gene in the development process controls that is involved.

  5. kittenz responds:

    There are anecdotal accounts of long-tailed bobcats but I’ve never seen anything to convince me that they really existed. Sometimes – very rarely – bobcats mate with domestic cats, and the offspring can have tails of different lengths.

    To the best of my knowledge, no lynxes with long tails have been found, and wild Eurasian lynx do not hybridize with other Eurasian cats (although they have been crossed with Canada lynxes in captivity).

    Eurasian lynxes are the largest of the lynxes and at a glance they look larger than they really are, because their legs are so long compared to most cats’ legs. Their faces have very vivid markings and their eyes are large. Seeing one suddenly would make quite an impression on someone and I can see how they could be mistaken for a larger cat.



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