The Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute and the Nashville Zoo are pleased to announce the birth of a male clouded leopard on March 1, 2017 from an artificial insemination (AI) procedure using frozen/thawed semen. This accomplishment is a first for this species and a giant step for global conservation efforts.
“This cub, the first clouded leopard offspring produced with cryopreserved semen, is a symbol of how zoos and scientists can come together to make positive change for animals and preserving global biodiversity,” said Adrienne Crosier, biologist at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute. “Collaboration is the key to conservation of clouded leopards, along with so many other rare and endangered species we care for and study.”
The Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute and Nashville Zoo have a long history of working together on clouded leopard conservation. Since 2000, they have collaborated with Point Defiance Zoo and Thailand’s Zoological Park Organization to form the Clouded Leopard Consortium and develop breeding programs as well as field monitoring projects for clouded leopards in Thailand. Because the captive clouded leopard population is not self-sustaining, it necessitates the need for intensive reproductive management techniques to maintaining captive populations not only in the U.S. but also throughout the world. Continue reading First clouded leopard cub produced with cryopreserved cells