We promise that a snow leopard is hiding in plain sight in this image. But can you see it? Not many people can spot the big cat unless they stare at the picture for a few minutes. And even then, it is still challenging to find the stealthy predator camouflaged among the rocks and alpine dirt. This image could worry you if you like to go hiking in the mountains or through rugged terrain. With creatures like this snow leopard and mountain lions hiding so well within the landscape, there’s going to be very little chance that you’ll see them until they’re right up on you. And by that time, it is much too late.
While you’ve probably come across animals in the wild, either while taking a bike ride through the woods or a hike, it is always a bit terrifying to think that such a large and deadly predator could be lurking right behind the trees. And this type of worries keeps otherwise brave people away from nature.
Can you see the snow leopard?
You’re not supposed to be able to see it! That’s why it is camouflaged so well. This creature has the ability to hide in plain sight while getting very close to its prey before pouncing on it and taking it down. And when this dangerous big cat gets close enough to its prey, the unfortunate victim has little hope of getting away from its jaws.
If you were taking a hike up the steep incline in this photo, you would think that you’re alone except for a few of the grazing sheep featured in the foreground. And while you’d probably enjoy the majestic scenery, you probably would not feel like your life was in danger. Unless you could see the camouflaged snow leopard inching closer to you, you would be ignoring the possibility of its emergence.
Snow leopards are known throughout the world. They have an elegant coat and are found in rugged mountain areas in central Asia.
According to the non-profit animal conservation group, SnowLeopard.org,
“Snow leopards are perfectly adapted to the cold, barren landscape of their high-altitude home, but human threats have created an uncertain future for the cats. Despite a range of over 2 million km2, scientists estimate that there may only be between 3,920 and 6,390 snow leopards left in the wild.”
Because there are so few of these creatures left in the world, it is a miracle that this one got photographed at all. But just because we say it is in the photo, you probably do not see the creature very quickly.
After all of this, we have not mentioned who took the picture. It was the highly sought after wildlife photographer Inger Vandyke. This amazing professional spent weeks in the rugged terrain of Ladakh, India to capture this amazing creature on film. And because she knew she was hunting for the snow leopard, she waited until she saw one emerge from hiding. And she snapped it up in the photo as quick as lightning.