Just in time for Halloween – and the last weekend of Boo at the Zoo – the Bronx Zoo debuted one of its newest residents, a snow leopard cub, which is sometimes known as a “ghost cat.”
“This snow leopard cub is special not only because it is an ambassador for its species, but because of its lineage,” Dr. Patrick Thomas said in a statement. Thomas is vice president and general curator of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), which oversees the Bronx Zoo, and serves as the zoo’s associate director.
The yet-unnamed – and adorable – female cub was born over the summer to mom K2 and dad Naltar, who is the son of Leo the snow leopard. Leo was rescued after being orphaned in the mountains of Pakistan in 2005 and brought to the Bronx Zoo the following year as part of a collaboration between the WCS and the U.S. and Pakistani governments.
“Leo and his descendants, including this cub, will help bolster the health and genetics of the snow leopard population in AZA-accredited zoos,” Thomas said.
More than 70 snow leopard cubs have been born at the Bronx Zoo, which was the first American zoo to exhibit these “ghost cats” in 1903, the zoo said. They are called such because their coloration helps them blend into the rocks and snow of their native mountains of Central Asia and parts of China, Mongolia, Russia, India and Bhutan.
But luckily, you only have to go as far as the Bronx to see this cutie, who can be seen at the Bronx Zoo’s Himalayan Highlands exhibit.
The zoo is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays, until 5:30 p.m. weekends through October and until 4:30 p.m. from November to March. For more info, visit bronxzoo.com.