Meet the cubs!
Our newest clouded leopard cub, named Tien, was born May 1 and is the third litter born to Chai Li (pronounced Chai‐lye) and her mate Nah Fun (pronounced Nah‐foon).
Tien has visits with female clouded leopard cub, Sang Dou, in the cub den - though not on a regular schedule.
Clouded leopards live mostly in the forest of Southeast Asia, but massive clear-cutting to make way for the expansion of palm oil plantations has threatened their populations. It is not known exactly how many clouded leopards exist because the cats are so difficult to study. With clouded leopards vulnerable to extinction in the wild, this new pair of cubs is very important to the species as a whole.
Point Defiance Zoo is one of only three zoos in the country that breeds endangered clouded leopard cubs, along with Nashville Zoo and Smithsonian Institution’s National Zoo. We participate in the Association of Zoos & Aquariums’ clouded leopard Species Survival Plan (SSP®), which oversees the clouded leopard populations in zoos worldwide and makes breeding recommendations based on the genetics of each cat. Fewer than 65 clouded leopards live in 24 accredited North American zoos.
The zoo has three other clouded leopards. Jao Ying and Chee Wit live in the Cats of the Canopy exhibit and Josie, who produced two cubs at Point Defiance Zoo in 2003, lives behind the scenes at the zoo’s Wild Wonders Outdoor Theater.