Monthly Archives: February 2016

Assistance needed for this young clouded leopard!!!

We are looking for an organisation that is into protecting, keeping and releasing clouded leopards? Please contact us (Wild Cats World) on info@wildcatsmagazine.nl. There’s a young clouded leopard waiting for a speedy release. At this moment he is cared for at the Cikananga wildlife Rescue center, Java/Indonesia. Anyone who can help out, the sooner the better, please get in touch!!!
Thanks a lot!!

 

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Volunteer Andrea Zimmermann

Andrea Zimmermann, Germany

In January 2016, I had the honor of spending two weeks at Wild Cats World, Kirkwood, SA, volunteering. Apart from the fact that it was high summer and the landscape was quite barren because of that, I at once fell in love with the countryside and the vast skies, both day and night.

But what I liked most was .. the cats . All of them, be they house cats or the (still rather) wild ones: leopards or caracals or cheetahs, the black-footed ones or the African wild cats. It’s really a very very deep experience to care of these animals, to bond with them and even play, each in their own way. Of course, they want to be respected in their feline ways, and they know, like unspoiled animals do, who likes them and who doesn’t.
During my stay, I worked with both owners, Babette and Anton, and that was fun, both are kind-hearted, generous people. I joined them for preparing food for the cats, and I learned lots of things I didn’t know I was actually capable of, like gutting and cutting up dead chickens. But hey, it’s all for the beloved cats, and so I overcame my initial disgust.  In addition, you get to know all kinds of animal bones and cat poo when cleaning the enclosures, which also is one of the tasks one should neither be afraid of nor disgusted by. Of course, even during this very short timeperiod, I learned lots about the cat species themselves being of service to them.
Well, and watching the cheetahs chase each other, watching the leopards interact and having a new-born leopard child in my arms, being accepted by Caracal lady Lea and teased by Cheetah boy Sunny .. Experiences that will stay with me and already want to be repeated :-).
All in all, I was proud to be of service to the cats and it was a most wonderful opportunity to live my love for this family of animals, the Felines.

 Andrea Zimmermann

Update Javan leopard release program – bad news twice

Update January 29th, 2016:

javan leopardLeopard Sawal is deceased on Saturday January 16th. The last four days before his death, he did not eat very well, or at least not in a normal way. On Friday Pak Alen, the carnivores keeper, found already that Sawal showed different behavior, he was restless. Saturday by noon he was really sick, around 2 am he was still walking around but was definitely not ok. Sawal was getting very weak but the vet could not do much, she did not dare to tranquilize him because due to his weakness, he would not survive the anesthesia. At the end it all went very quick and around five o’clock he died! We still have no idea what it could have been and have absolutely no indication. The autopsy still has to be done, hopefully this upcoming week. Once the autopsy is done we hopefully know what caused his death and we will let you all know.

Unfortunately there is more sad news. Yesterday we had to euthanize the female leopard. Her situation had improved significantly in the first month, she had gained weight, her muscle mass had increased, she was clearly much stronger and looked a lot better than when she arrived at our place. But in recent weeks there was not much progress on her body condition. It was obvious from the start she was blind at one eye but meanwhile it became clear she was blind at both eyes. We saw from the beginning there was a kind of haze over her other eye and hoped that it would recover but ultimately this has not happened. We’ve done all sorts of tests to make sure she was blind in both eyes and this was clearly the case. She literally ran into things although finally she knew the layout of her cage better and even tried to climb. After many consultations with everyone involved we made the decision to euthanize her. It was not fair to a wild born leopard to let her life go on this way, blind and captive for the rest of her life! It was a very difficult decision because she has fought so hard and has been so brave but with the poor prospect she had this was the right decision.

We are all still very upset and sad, the death of the female leopard and Sawal has touched us deeply! 

RIP precious Javan leopards, you will never be forgotten.

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Javan Leopard release program

The Javan leopard is an endemic species to Java and at present classified as critical endangered species on IUCN Red List. Categorized under Appendix I CITES.

The Population estimates are not certain, but certainly less than 250 mature individuals, possibly even less than 100 (IUCN Red List).

That the Javan Leopard is endangered is a result of pet trade, hunting, habitat loss and fragmentation but also a decline of prey makes that the Javan leopards enter villages to find food, which causes leopard-human conflict.

While research has shown the important role of leopards in the ecosystem and biodiversity in the rainforest and their role as top predators, the public in Java is not educated in this. Their lack of knowledge means they perceive the Javan Leopard as a threat and a risk to their wellbeing.

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