HE'S off on the adventure of a lifetime and giant cats are in his sights.
Gladstone academic Owen Nevin on Friday departs for a research trip to Kazakhstan, where he will study the effects of climate change on snow leopards and their prey.
The international collaboration will involve CQUniversity, where Professor Nevin is associate vice-chancellor of the Gladstone region, and universities in Kazakhstan and the United Kingdom.
"I'm really excited about going," he said. "I don't expect to see snow leopards while I'm out there, but there's always the chance, a glimmer of a chance, of seeing that."
The project will use cameras to film the population of the highly secretive species, and will take Professor Nevin to the largest landlocked country in the world.
It will also introduce snow leopards as a new topic of research for the seasoned wildlife researcher, whose main focus had been on bears.
"It's always exciting to be starting a new research project," he said. "Exploring a new environment and getting up into the high mountains, it's a really exciting opportunity."