Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Oldest Snow Leopard in Captivity Passes Away

Oldest captive snow leopard dies

The world's oldest snow leopard born in captivity died Monday at Higashiyama Zoo at the age of 21 years and 9 months, the facility said.

The female snow leopard, Patora, was born at the zoo in Nagoya in 1988 and gave birth to three cubs. She fell ill earlier this month and was given antibiotics Saturday but died of natural causes early Monday.

Since a snow leopard in the United States died in 2007 at the age of 22 years and 5 months, Patora had been the oldest known snow leopard, according to the zoo.

"She had a beautiful black and white coat," a zoo worker said. "She had avid fans."

The species, a relatively large cat with

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