Participants from Sarswoti Secondary School at Toribari, Sikaicha, Taplejung, March 2023

Photo: Niraj Thakali/TSN/SLC

Taplejung-based Himali Conservation Forum (HCF) in partnership with Teka Samuha Nepal and the Snow Leopard Conservancy conducted Snow Leopard Nature Tours as part of the community-based Snow Leopard Conservation Program from March 9-17, 2023. Taplejung is one of Nepal’s notable snow leopard habitat ranges.

Conservation education is essential for everyone, especially students and community members who share snow leopard and protected animal habitats, to help them learn about wildlife and the natural resources they utilize as well as how to manage those resources sustainably for present and future generations. Snow leopard nature tours proved to be a successful way of disseminating snow leopard- based scientific knowledge among students, teachers, citizen scientists, and community members.

Students participating in games

HCF partnered with six local schools to organize the tour programs. Participants were students in grades 6, 7, and 8. The program objectives included:

  • Creating a synergetic space for students to learn about snow leopards, habitat, and prey.

  • Helping students to learn from nature and sharing that knowledge and their experiences with others

  • Acquainting students with technology used to monitor snow leopards and their prey

  • Boosting students’ capacities and creativity

Students learning about FoxLights predator deterrents

Students learning how to set up trail cameras

Instructor demonstrating how Foxlights nighttime predator deterrents work

The objectives of the Snow Leopard Nature Tours were achieved through participation in a variety of games, being introduced to technology such as FoxLights predator deterrents, trail cameras, and GPS tracking collars, resourcing conservation educational materials and texts, bird watching, storytelling, and creating artwork and poetry.

Bird watching

Students learning about GPS tracking

A student reciting their poem about snow leopards

“This is something that students will remember for a long time” … Sharmlia Khadka, Conservation Teacher

Ms. Sharmila Khadka and her students

Photos: Anil Adhikari, Teka Samuha Nepal, Snow Leopard Conservancy