SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, April 18, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — Hogle Zoo has shared photos of its two Amur leopard cubs, born Christmas day, who will make their public debut late this month.
The female is Chelsea and her brother is Jordan. Mother Zeya is nearly 10 years old, and the cubs are nearly four months old.
The cubs may stay with their mother, Zeya, for up to two years before becoming fully independent, a Hogle Zoo statement says. Average litter size for a female Amur leopard is just over two with females first breeding at an age of three to four years.
This is Zeya and and father Dmitri’s fourth successful litter of Amur leopard cubs.
“Recommended by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums Species Survival Plan (SSP), both mother and father came to the zoo on a breeding program. Boy, were they were spot on!,” the Hogle Zoo statement says.
Zeya arrived at Utah’s Hogle Zoo in 2015 from Wildlife Heritage Foundation in Ashford, England. Father, Dmitri, also approximately 10 years of age, and came to the zoo in 2013 from Minnesota Zoo.
“We are excited to introduce these special cubs to the public,” said Melanie Kuse, Asian Highlands Animal Care supervisor, in the prepared statement. “These cubs have proven to be more independent than other cubs we have had in the past – they started walking and eating meat sooner than some of our other cubs, and Zeya continues to be an attentive and excellent mother.”
The cubs have been vaccinated and undergone medical exams to make sure they are healthy, said Dr. Erika Crook, the Zoo’s Director of Animal Care.
“The cubs have been appropriately feisty for their exams and fortunately they appear very healthy and to be growing well.”
The zoo anticipates having the cubs visible by guests late April 2022, in Asian Highlands exhibit. Viewing hours may be adjusted given their new schedule and comprehensive natal care.
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