We’ve welcomed clouded leopards!

June 22, 2022

We’re thrilled to announce the arrival of a sibling pair of vulnerable clouded leopards to the zoo.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) estimates there are only 3,700 to 5,580 clouded leopards left in the wild.

Did you know?

  • Clouded leopards can purr but not roar. Despite their small stature, their feeding, stalking and grooming behaviour is much like that of their big cat relatives.
  • They can also open their mouths up to 100 degrees thanks to their unique skull structure, which is similar to that of a primitive sabre-toothed cat!

Clouded leopards are great climbers and are native to Asia inhabiting the rain forests of Indonesia, the Himalayas in Nepal, and parts of mainland South East Asia.

Clouded leopards can live at altitudes of up to 3,500m, preferring to live in closed evergreen rainforests and shrubland where they can easily hide thanks to their patterned coats. 

They can be quite shy and love densely packed vegetation, so you may need to be patient and quiet when visiting in order to spot them.

Primarily nocturnal, clouded leopards sit somewhere between big and small cats in terms of size, with wild females in Thailand weighing between 11.5 and 13.5kg and males 16-18kg.

Clouded leopards have particularly long tails and huge canine teeth, which are well adapted to their carnivorous diet of hog deer, brush-tailed porcupine, Malayan pangolin, and Indochinese ground squirrel in the wild.

Taevey and Kanya (both females) are making themselves at home opposite the entrance to Wild Explorers.

One keen Marwell supporter and leopard enthusiast, Maisie, age 8, sent in a lovely drawing and letter about how excited she is to see our new arrivals! It reads:

“To Marwell Zoo, I was excited to read the news on Facebook of your two new arrivals, Taevey and Kanya the clouded leopards.

“I love all types of leopards! I loved seeing the snow leopards in the sun when I visited Marwell Zoo with the Brownies in May.

“Hope to be back soon to see the leopards. From Maisie, age 8.”

We always love seeing your letters, drawings, photos, and comments over on our social media, so make sure you’re following us! Next time you visit the zoo, pop over and see if you can spot our clouded leopard pair.