Little Leopard Emerges from the Den at Budapest Zoo
August 17, 2013
A endangered Persian Leopard Cub born on June 10 made his debut last week at the Budapest Zoo. The male cub, named Dante, was given his first medical exam and presented to the public for the first time.
Dante is the seventh member of this rare species to be born at the Budapest Zoo in just ten years.
Persian Leopards, also known as Caucasian Leopards, are the largest of the Leopard subspecies. They inhabit mountain forests and meadows in the Caucasus region of Central Asia. Iran holds the largest population of up to 850 cats, and about 200 are thought to live in Afghanistan. Fewer than 100 Persian Leopards live in Turkmenistan, and a handful dwell in other countries in the region.
Iran’s huge Central Alborz Protected Area is the largest stronghold for these rare cats. Human disturbance in the form of poaching, habitat loss, and agriculture are the Persian Leopard’s major threats. They are classified as Endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.