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Rare Amur leopard cats breeding at Helsinki zoo

A pair of Amur leopard cats brought to Korkeasaari Zoo last year have produced their first litter of kittens.

Amurinleopardikissaparin pennut ovat nyt kuukauden ikäisiä.
The kittens are about a month old. Image: Annika Sorjonen / Korkeasaaren eläintarha

Helsinki's Korkeasaari Zoo said on Tuesday that a pair of Amur leopard cats have produced three kittens, two female and one male.

The youngsters are about a month old and have begun to venture out of their den.

Their mother was brought from Novosibirsk Zoo in Russia, while the father was born in late 2018 at Jihlava Zoo in the Czech Republic.

Article continues after photo

Pennut ovat uskaltautuneet tassuttelemaan myös pesänsä ulkopuolelle.
The three kittens have begun to explore outside the den. Image: Annika Sorjonen / Korkeasaaren eläintarha

It has been 15 years since the Helsinki zoo had Amur leopard cats, and two decades since any young were born there.

As Amur leopards are hunted for their pelts, the species is threatened in some areas.

The Amur leopard cat (Prionailurus bengalensis euptilura) is not to be confused with the larger Amur leopard (Panthera pardus orientalis), which is critically endangered.

Korkeasaari also features some of this larger species, as well as Siberian tigers (Panthera tigris tigris), which are sometimes called Amur tigers.

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