The Xinjiang Snow Leopard Project (XSLP) is an initiative started by the Beijing Forestry University and the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU) at Oxford University. You can read about the project on their website –
The team is working closely with the Xinjiang Government and local communities to research what’s happening with snow leopards and their prey in the Taxkurgan Nature Reserve of West Xinjiang.
The last published information about snow leopard numbers in this area is from the 1980s where George Schaller estimated in one of the local communities that there were between 50 and 75 snow leopards. This project is really important to see what has happened to the snow leopards here in the last 20 odd years. They already know from sightings by local herders that there are snow leopards still in the area and the 2009 work will help to establish numbers and impacts on local herder communities.
The team is keeping a blog of the project. Check it out here