Amazing video of snow leopard hunting prey

Photographers Vedant Thite and Edith Barschi recently shared an astounding video of a snow leopard chasing a urial down a steep mountain. It’s a perfect example of this impressive carnivore's unique ability to hunt prey in its rocky terrain. Watch below how it uses its long tail to navigate the quick sharp turns—truly amazing adaptations in action.

If it seems the snow leopard was custom-designed by evolution to reign the mountains of high Asia, a recent publication actually bears that out. The team investigated the forelimb of the snow leopard and found that it has evolved with functional adaptations that balance the demands of head-first descent, pouncing, climbing across rocky terrain, restraint of large prey, rapid pursuit, and navigating deep snow.  

Snow Leopard Trust Science and Conservation Director, Dr. Koustubh Sharma tweeted his commentary about this incredible video.

Urial is a wild mountain ungulate belonging to the group from which humans captured and domesticated sheep some 11000 years ago. Our Executive Director, Dr. Charu Mishra recently wrote a fascinating article about this species here.  

The snow leopard apparently pursued the herd of urial for hours. Stalked in the morning, went for a siesta in the day, then came  back in the evening, picked its target and went for the charge. As if that wasn’t impressive enough, it chose one with an injured forelimb.

Now if you go back to the first video, the speed that the urial achieves, despite the injury, is just mind boggling… Congratulations Edith, Jonathan and Vedant for this incredible sighting, and thank you for sharing!

Update from Vedant for those wondering about carrying it up: 

“The snow leopard dragged the kill a few meters & rested. Must have removed the rumen overnight to reduce weight. Saw it midway up the mountain the next morning. Others saw it later, dragging it into a crevice…”

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Special thanks to @VedantThite and Edith Barschi for sharing their amazing videos with us.


  1. WAOW, feel sorry for the Urial but thankful for feeding the hungry stomach of our beloved snowleopard.Waow, just amazing, how both run off the mountain with such ease and agility! Thank you for sharing!

  2. Hello,

    Thanks for this new publication on this “balancing hunter”, it’s just impressive.
    Thank you for your commitment and for sharing your experiences.
    Greetings from the Swiss Alps.

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