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Clouded leopard cubs are both male, National Zoo says

Clouded leopard cubs born at the National ZOo's Conservation and Research Center in March

The two endangered clouded leopard cubs that were born in the National Zoo's Conservation and Research Center in late March are both male, the zoo has announced.  The Washington Post reports:

The sex of the cubs ... could not be determined until their first veterinary examination. Both weigh about 19.5 ounces and have opened their eyes. More than 70 clouded leopards have been born at the research center in Front Royal, Va., since 1979. The previous litter was born in 1993.

Clouded leopards present major challenges to those attempting to breed them in captivity, in part because males often attack their potential mates. Female clouded leopards also have a tendency to kill their young, either intentionally or unintentionally, shortly after birth. 

The cubs' birth is the result of the first successful clouded leopard breeding in any zoo in North America in six years. The National Zoo hailed it as especially important because the cubs' genes come from outside the captive clouded leopard population. Their parents, Hannibal and Jao Chu, were brought to the U.S. from Thailand. 

Another picture of a cub during the examination after the jump.

Clouded leopard cubs born at the National ZOo's Conservation and Research Center in March

-- Lindsay Barnett

Photos: Mehgan Murphy / AFP/Getty Images

 
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OMG they are soooooooooooooooooooo precious can i have one


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