Snow for snow leopards at Bronx Zoo

January 2, 2009

Shelby the snow leopard at Bronz Zoo is camouflaged in the snow.

Shelby the snow leopard at Bronz Zoo is camouflaged in the snow. Photo ABC News.

New York City is getting lots of winter snow and one inhabitant that loves it is Shelby, one of the snow leopards at the Bronx Zoo. Bronx Zoo has bred more snow leopards in captivity than any other zoo in the world. It also does a lot of work to protect snow leopards in the wild and help protect natural habitat areas. The Zoo recently announced they’ll open another snow leopard exhibit in the Central Park Zoo in Manhattan. ABC News article here.


Tough country – the places snow leopards call ‘home’.

January 2, 2009
Arid Himalayan landscape

Arid Himalayan landscape. Photo R. Brown

Snow leopards like very steep and rugged terrain in high altitudes. They like cliffs and ridges to survey for prey and they like gullies and rocky outcrops to hide. They live in the Himalayas and adjacent mountain ranges at elevations of 3000 to over 5000 m (10,000 to 17,000 feet) in what is some of the most inhospitable environment on earth.  Arid and dry, thin air, snow, no trees, often the snow leopard’s home looks like a lunar landscape. Over the years as I’ve trekked through this type of area I’ve often wondered how they manage to survive.

Melbourne Zoo snow leopard update

January 2, 2009

Goodbye Gregor

Sadly I heard news the other day that Gregor, our lovely 20 year old male, had died at the Zoo. He was so beautiful and will be missed by visitors, snow leopard sponsors and especially his keepers who all felt he was really special. Gregor reached a pretty good age though, as in the wild, snow leopards rarely live past about 10 years. Still I’ll miss him – he’s been responsible for a lot of my fascination with snow leopards and I’ve visited him many times over the years.

Treating injured snow leopards in zoos

January 2, 2009
Suou, the cub, at tama Zoo Tokyo. Pic by Steve Tracy.

Suou, the cub, at Tama Zoo, Tokyo. Photo Steve Tracy.

All keepers know how difficult  it can be to treat an injured or sick snow leopard. The team at Tama Zoo in Tokyo recently had to deal with their 4 month old cub, Suou, who had a broken leg. The challenge was not to separate him from the rest of his family at such young age as problems with later reintroduction to the familycould happen. Read Steve Tracy’s post on the Snow Leopard Trust’s Blog on how the Zoo team came up with a solution. Suou’s now well and happy.