One of the most famous members of wildlife in Iran are the world's last surviving, critically endangered Asiatic cheetah also known as the Iranian Cheetah, which are today found nowhere else but in Iran. Iran had lost all its Asiatic Lion and the now extinct Caspian Tigers by the earlier part of the twentieth century.
Iran's wildlife is composed of several animal species including bears, gazelles, wild pigs, wolves, jackals, panthers, Eurasian lynx, and foxes. Other domestic animals include, sheeps, goats, cattle, horses, water buffalo, donkeys, and camels. The pheasant, partridge, stork, eagles and falcon are also native to Iran.
The Persian leopard is said to be the largest of all the subspecies of leopards in the world. The main range of this species in Iran closely overlaps with that of Bezoar Ibex. Hence, it is found throughout Alborz and Zagrosmountain ranges, as well as smaller ranges within the Iranian plateau. Leopard population is very sparse, due to loss of habitat, loss of natural prey, and population fragmentation. Apart from Bezoar Ibex, wild sheep, boar, deer (either Maral red deer orroe deer), and domestic animals constitute leopards' diet in Iran.
Endangered species of Iran
As of 2001, 20 of Iran's mammal species and 14 bird species are endangered. Endangered species in Iran include the Baluchistan bear, Asiatic Cheetah, Caspian Seal, Persian fallow deer, Siberian white crane, hawksbill turtle, green turtle, Oxus cobra, Latifi's viper, dugong, Persian leopard, Caspian Sea Wolf, and dolphins. At least 74 species of Iranian wildlife are on the red list of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, a sign of serious threats against the country’s biodiversity. Majlis has been showing disregard for wildlife by passing laws and regulations such as the act that lets the Ministry of Industries and Mines (Iran) exploit mines without the involvement of the Department of Environment (Iran), and by approving large national development projects without demanding comprehensive study of their impact on wildlife habitats.