Snow Leopards Arrive in Chester

World leading conservationist and popular Northwest tourist attraction Chester Zoo recently celebrated an important milestone. For the first time since it was established close to a century ago, the zoo is proud to care for two snow leopards.

The highly threatened carnivores have arrived in Chester ahead of the grand opening of the zoo’s brand-new Himalayan habitat.

An immersive area designed specifically for the big cats is now home to both a female (Nubra) and male (Yashin) snow leopard. It faithfully recreates the Himalayan mountains’ rocky terrain using over 600 tonnes worth of rocks and scree that was kindly donated by the largest brick producer in the world, Wienerberger UK.

Features of the Himalayan habitat include ledges, rocky outcrops, steep and rugged cliffs, cave retreats, and two large areas outdoors, so that visitors can get a clear view of their activities.

Chester zookeepers explained that having overhangs that the big cats can get beneath to mark their territory is vital to recreating an authentic wild experience. Back in their native lands, the upper surfaces are commonly coated with snow and snow leopards use the underside of ledges to help preserve their scent messages for an extended period.

Air-cooled cave retreats will also allow visitors to get up close to the snow leopards, while providing a colder space for the carnivores to be comfortable during warmer weather.

Visitors to Chester Zoo this Easter getting involved in the special egg trail will also get a glimpse of the two new arrivals at their habitat is located at the end of the hunt.

Return to the News