Miller Park Zoo welcomes new Snow Leopard

By WEEK Reporter

November 1, 2012 Updated Nov 1, 2012 at 12:40 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill -- Miller Park Zoo announced Thursday that a female Snow Leopard, “Hima,” has joined the male on exhibit at the Zoo to establish a breeding pair.

The animal is part of Miller Park Zoo’s conservation efforts via the Snow Leopard Species Survival Plan.

Hima is 2-½ years old; just one day older than “Rilu,” the male Snow Leopard that has been at the Zoo since 2011. Hima arrived in Bloomington via the Bronx Zoo. She was born at the Granby Zoo in Quebec, Canada.

Miller Park Zoo says that the importation process to bring Hima to Miller Park Zoo took over a year. The large cats are currently on exhibit in the Katthoefer Animal Building.

“The Snow Leopard is an endangered species with a captive population of about 150 animals at 60 institutions throughout North America,” Zoo Superintendent Jay Tetzloff said. “We are hoping to see a litter from this pair, although chances are low for next summer. Hopefully by 2014 we can see some cubs.”

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