“Rare Leopard Births Triplets After Decades: A Hopeful Sign for Endangered Species”

“Rare Leopard Births Triplets After Decades: A Hopeful Sign for Endangered Species”

Leopard cats are categorized as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List, except in Taiwan where they are endangered and commonly appear in news headlines after being hit by cars while crossing forest roads. Taipei Zoo, among other establishments, provides medical assistance to these injured creatures before returning them to their natural habitat.The zookeepers recently had a celebration on March 2, 2021, as they witnessed an event that had not taken place in the last two decades. After recovering from injuries, Ping Ping, a female leopard cat, mated with Xiao Yu, another injured leopard cat at the zoo. She then found a peaceful spot and gave birth to three adorable cubs around 6 p.m. It was truly an exciting moment for everyone involved.

Leopard cats in their natural habitat typically give birth to two or three kittens at a time. Remarkably, for the past two decades, the staff at Taipei Zoo had never encountered a litter of triplets until recently when Ping Ping gave birth to three adorable cubs.

Ping Ping was given a boost in her diet and nutritional intake. Meanwhile, the kittens were monitored closely to ensure that they were receiving adequate nourishment for their healthy growth and development into adult animals.

Not long after, the vets at Taipei Zoo observed some hormonal changes in the female leopard cat, indicating that she was pregnant. To everyone’s delight, in February 2022, Ping Ping gave birth to another healthy baby leopard cat. The population of leopard cats in Taiwan has dwindled to less than 500, which means that any new addition to this rare species is a precious blessing for the conservationists and animal caregivers at Taipei Zoo.

Currently, the three leopard cat triplets are thriving and receiving attentive care. The conservation team at the Unique Biological Research and Conservation Center have worked diligently to train and assess Hu Liwang and Hu Lixiu, ensuring their readiness for release into the wild. Hu Lixiu, specifically, was observed and cared for at Taipei Zoo.

According to Taipei Zoo’s representative, Hu Liwang

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