Heard it in passing on the radio yesterday and saw it in today's paper, but yay! Very exciting![You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
They have pictures at the link, but here's the article:
South Bend, Indiana, USA --
"The Potawatomi Zoo is welcoming three little bundles of joy. The Zoo said residents of the Zoo Pearl and Sergei are new parents to three extremely rare Amur Leopard cubs.
A release from the Zoo said the cubs were born at the Zoo on March 20. Amur Leopards are the world's rarest big cat, considered a critically endangered species with only approximately 70 remaining in the wild and just over 100 in Zoos.
The big cats have a high death rate in the wild due to poaching and loss of habitat. The release said efforts at breeding Amur leopards in captivity have been marginally successful. Potawatomi Zoo's three cubs are the only surviving Amur leopard cubs in North American zoos so far this year.
The cubs received their first veterinary check up on May 14th and were given a clean bill of health by Zoo Staff Veterinarian Dr. Ronan Eustace who also administered their first round of vaccinations. General Curator Josh Sisk said the cubs are a great achievement.
“Over the last few years there have been few to no Amur Leopard births in North American zoos. For Potawatomi Zoo to have three of these very rare cubs born right here in South Bend is a great achievement,” Sisk said.
Potawatomi Zoo Executive Director Marcy Dean added the birth puts the Zoo on the map.
“The fact that we have the only three in the country is fantastic for both our Zoo and the population overall,” Dean said. “This puts Potawatomi Zoo on the map both locally and globally. We are thrilled to contribute in such a meaningful way to the survival of this critically endangered species.”
The Potawatomi Zoo is a participant a program actively engaging in breeding genetically healthy Amur leopards to help populate the critically endangered species. Amur Leopards are only found in Far Eastern Russia and Northeast China. The Amur leopard cubs will not be available for public viewing for another month or two, due to both age and size. "