Big Bear Lake, CA, June 26, 2014 – Shanti and Asha, the Snow Leopard sisters, arrived at LAX via FedEx on Tuesday morning at 3:30 am. Lorie Judd of Big Bear Park and Rec left the mountain at almost midnight on Monday to meet the Leopards and their handlers who had flown in from Seattle. Their crates were loaded into a cargo van and by 4:30 am they were on their way to Big Bear and their new home at the Big Bear Alpine Zoo.

Born two years ago at the Woodland Park Zoo in Washington state under a breeding program that aims to propagate endangered species, it was discovered that both cats have Multiple Ocular Coloboma. This congenital eye anomaly caused each Leopard to have their right eye removed to prevent further complications and eliminated them from the breeding program. They were relocated here because of Big Bear Alpine Zoo’s highly regarded rehabilitation program.

A beautiful new Himalayan Habitat was built just for the Leopard sisters and features a rock ‘mountain’, trees, and two rock dens. You can meet these two beautiful animals and see their new enclosure, which is an example of what things will look like when the zoo relocates, on Saturday, June 28th at 11:00 am.