A snow leopard cub is seen in the wildlife zoo in Xining, capital of northwest China's Qinghai Province, June 10, 2017. The female cub, the only snow leopard alive by artificial breeding in China, turned one year old on Saturday. (Xinhua/Zhang Hongxiang)
The Tibetan Plateau Wildlife Park has asked the public to name China's first artificially bred snow leopard to mark the first birthday of the cub.
The existence of the zoo's 'little princess' has only just been revealed, as artificial breeding is only deemed successful after babies are at least six months old, according to Qi Xinzhang, deputy director of Wildlife Park.
Born on June 10, 2016, the female snow leopard is the offspring of an eight-year-old male 'Zhuangzhuang' and a ten-year-old female called 'Erbao'.
Weighing 18.5 kg, the cub is said to be full of energy, walking and jumping up and down in the newly built snow leopard pavilion of the wildlife park.
The baby snow leopard's original 20 square meters 'small room' has been upgraded to 850 square meters 'presidential suite' in the park to give the cub more space.
The wildlife park is hoping the new female will have her own offspring in two or three years' time, making a significant contribution to the wildlife park's breeding of snow leopards.
The snow leopard is regarded as a barometer of the health of the high-altitude ecosystem. In 1996, it was on China's Red List of endangered animal species. China accounts for 60% of the world's snow leopard habitats.