COAL VALLEY, Ill. — The Niabi Zoo has a new animal in their family.
The zoo welcomed Iona the Amur Leopard on June 2. She comes from Thrigby Hall Wildlife Gardens in the United Kingdom.
Iona is Niabi's second Amur Leopard. A male named Jilin joined the zoo in back 2019. Niabi hopes the pair can be used for breeding.
Amur Leopards are considered critically endangered, with less than 80 wild cats in their native habitat of Eastern Russia.
Niabi is now one of just 50 zoos in North America that is working to increase the population of Amur Leopards.
Right now, Iona is in a quarantine period and is not available to be visited. Eventually, she will be moved into the enclosure with Jilin.