In captivity, these endangered leopards usually give in to murderous tendencies during the breeding process. Either the male will kill the female when placed together to mate, or if mating is successful, the mother leopard will kill her cubs accidentally or intentionally.
But yesterday, caretakers discovered the two cubs with Jao Chu, the mother leopard. The babies will be hand raised by zookeepers to guarantee their safety and survival.
In the wild, clouded leopards are native to southeast Asia. Their population has dwindled due to hunting for their pelts.
Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary, located on the coast of Orissa, India, is the largest of only three nesting areas for Olive Ridley sea turtles, which are considered endangered by the IUCN. In fact, the mass nesting (or arribadas) include 200,000 – 500,000 female turtles coming on to the shore. [Watch a video of hatchlings traveling back to sea]
Now, in addition to the dangers of netting and trawlers, these endangered animals could be confronted with another threat to their survival. Tata Steel and Larsen & Toubro are scheduled to build a major sea port just north of the sanctuary at the mouth of the Dharma River. If the construction takes place, then dredging, increased shipping traffic, artificial lights, oil spills, and other pollutants would be brought to the area causing a disruption to ecological balance of the area’s waters.
Five Burmese star tortoises hatched two months ago at the Knoxville Zoo in Tennessee. They are due to be displayed this spring.
Burmese star tortoises are classified as critically endangered, nearing extinction in the wild due to deforestation and poaching.
The zoo worked in conjunction with the Turtle Survival Alliance to develop successful incubation periods for the tortoises. As one of only four AZA zoos to hatch these endangered tortoises, the Knoxville Zoo will share their successful incubation techniques with other AZA organizations in order to propogate the species.
Two Matschie’s tree kangaroos were born at the Lincoln Children’s Zoo in Nebraska in December 2008. Pictured here is mother Milla with the babies in her pouch. Zoo officials expect to see the twins’ heads poking out of the pouch in May 2009.
The pair of twins was a welcome surprise as Matschie’s (or Huon) tree kangaroos are endangered. In the wild, they inhabit high elevations of the island of New Guinea, Papua New Guinea.
In August of 2007, rebels had taken over Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo, one of the few habitats of the extremely endangered mountain gorilla. In turn, most of the rangers and staff fled the rebel-occupied area.
Last Tuesday, a group of reporters, rangers, and scientists returned to the area for the first time in 15 months. What they discovered was uplifting: a family of mountain gorillas contently consuming bamboo stalks.
Ironically, the rebel hold of the area actually benefited the gorillas as it shifted the area of fighting away from the gorilla habitat. According to Benjamin Nsana, a park guide who elected to stay behind when the rebels took control, the area was safe for gorillas because the rebels guarded the perimeters so carefully. In fact, 6 babies were born since last year.