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Turtle Back Zoo Welcomes Endangered Leopard Cub Nadya

Amur leopard Nadya was born at the Turtle Back Zoo.
Amur leopard Nadya was born at the Turtle Back Zoo. Photo Credit: Turtle Back Zoo

No, this isn't "Tiger King," -- it's better.

The Turtle Back Zoo in West Orange welcome a female Amur leopard cub Nadya on Friday, March 13, to mom Annika and dad Valeri. Her name means "filled with hope" in Russian.

"Nadya’s birth has great importance since her species is classified as critically endangered," according to the zoo, noting that there are estimated to be about 84 Amur leopards in their native habitat.

Mom Annika had been under baby watch for months, the zoo said. Cameras in her den monitored the cub closely after birth.

"When Annika did not nurse the newborn cub, it was decided by veterinarian staff and management at Turtle Back Zoo, in consultation with the Species Survival Plan coordinator, to begin hand rearing," the zoo said.

"Cub and mom are happy and healthy."

Nadya will remain off exhibit as she receives around the clock care from staff.

Annika and Valeri were an SSP recommended pair and this is both of their first litter of cubs.

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