Will Snow Leopards Eat Red Pandas? (Answered)

Yes, The Snow Leopard and Martens are 2 of the primary threats for the Red Panda. They both hunt and kill Red Pandas.

Yes, The Snow Leopard and Martens are 2 of the primary threats for the Red Panda. They both hunt and kill Red Pandas.

Snow leopards live in the same region as red pandas and are thus considered their natural enemies.

Why is the Snow Leopard the Predator of Red Pandas?

Geographically speaking, red pandas live in the same habitat as snow leopards.

Red pandas can often be seen in mountain forests that have high altitudes and a nearby source of water.

With this kind of environment, red pandas actually have fewer natural predators and threats compared to those living at the foot or further down slopes.

The cold is usually enough to ward off animals that might think of hunting prey in these environments, something that pandas are well-adapted to. Red pandas have thick tails and dense fur, which makes them perfect for this type of climate. However, they’re not immune to freezing temperatures- they have been known to sunbathe’ by climbing up the canopies and catching the rays.

Snow leopards are basically the same- they are considered the top predators’ in high mountains. You might think that snow leopards can actually hunt and kill prey that is three times their weight.

Snow leopards prefer to hunt and eat bharal, or blue sheep in the regions of Tibet and the Himalayas, and ibex in the Russian, Mongolian, Tien Shan, and Karakorum mountain ranges. However, when these foods are scarce they are known to eat the smaller prey, such as birds, hares, pika, and marmots.

Why Do Snow Leopards Eat Red Pandas?

Red pandas face two natural enemies- the snow leopard and martens. Martens are medium-sized carnivorous animals that look like weasels. Like snow leopards, these creatures have been known to take down animals that are significantly bigger than them.

Now, you might be wondering how could red pandas get eaten by snow leopards and martens if they’re big and have several excellent defensive features?

In a one-on-one fight, an adult panda has a good chance of making it out alive, or even severely injuring the snow leopard. It’s been said that a fully grown panda will have very few adversaries because they have powerful jaws and immense physical strength.

However, despite their weapons pandas are generally peaceful animals, and will prefer to avoid these types of confrontations. They can climb high up to avoid getting eaten and will teach their cubs the same when they’re months old. What’s more, they’re not known to hibernate and can swim if necessary.

The type of red pandas that are usually in danger of getting eaten is the cubs. They don’t have fully developed jaws and muscles, and won’t be able to defend themselves against marten and snow leopards. These cubs can also fall prey to various other animals, including Birds of Prey, jackals, and other small carnivorous species.

It’s not unusual for a snow leopard to eat a red panda every now and then, but they would rather eat bigger game, such as ibex, sheep, and the occasional goat to satisfy themselves. Snow leopards actually play an important role in keeping the mountain ecosystem balanced by keeping the marmot populations at a minimum.

Other than snow leopards, marten, and small carnivorous animals, red pandas are being hunted by humans. Their population is slowly dwindling due to human encroachment, deforestation, poaching, and diminishing food supplies.

Will Snow Leopards Eat Red Pandas?

It’s not unusual for a snow leopard to eat a red panda every now and then

Red pandas are usually on the list of favorite food by hungry snow leopards. Marten, a small carnivorous weasel-like creature, will also hunt and eat red pandas if the opportunity presents itself.

Red panda cubs are usually the ones that are in danger since other animals like Birds of Prey and jackals will eat them. As for snow leopards, their list of prey is many, including the ibex, mountain sheep and goats, and smaller game such as hares, marmots, pika, and birds. Snow leopards also keep marmot populations to a minimum and balance the mountain ecosystem.

Also, look at our other articles on Red Panda (Lesser Panda) below.