A snow leopard is released into the wild in Ali Prefecture, Tibet, April 21, 2014. (Photo/Chinanews.com)
Around noon that day, a villager in Deru Village, Ritu County of Ali Prefecture reported that a wild beast broke into his sheepfold, and it was then captured by him and his fellow villagers. The 'criminal' was later identified as a snow leopard, a rarely-seen animal in the region. It is reported that the leopard was old and had eaten too much lamb to be able to jump out of the fold. Native to West China and the mountain ranges of Central Asia, snow leopard is an endangered species under first-class state protection in China. It is believed that the total number of snow leopards on earth is smaller that of the giant panda.