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Clouded leopards to make public debut at Naples Zoo

Posted at 1:21 PM, Dec 09, 2016
and last updated 2019-02-28 21:33:15-05

NAPLES, Fla. -- A pair of rare juvenile leopards will make their public debut at Naples Zoo on Saturday.

The cats will be featured at a display called "Sunny Days, Clouded Leopards".

According to Naples Zoo, Masala is an 8-month-old male from Point Defiance Zoo in Tacoma, Washington, and Tikka is a 9-month-old female from a private facility in Kansas.

The Association of Zoos and Aquariums' Species Survival Plan specifically paired these two for the long-term genetic viability of the population. Clouded leopards are paired before they are a year old and remain in that pairing for their lifetime.

Generally, they do not begin breeding before their second year.

The zoo says clouded leopards are vulnerable to extinction and there are only 64 in the North American managed population.

The new clouded leopards will take turns on exhibit with Naples Zoo’s spotted leopard. Clouded leopards will be on exhibit every Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday and the spotted leopard will be on exhibit every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.