Twycross Zoo’s Efforts to Save Snow Leopards

Twycross Zoo's Efforts to Save Snow Leopards
Twycross Zoo’s Efforts to Save Snow Leopards

Twycross Zoo has captured the special moment when two snow leopards, Irma and Khumbu, meet for the first time.

Irma, a 15-year-old female, and Khumbu, a 4-year-old male, have been introduced to each other in their main enclosure on 20 July. After a series of supervised introductions; the zoo hopes they will eventually become a breeding pair.

Khumbu arrived to Twycross Zoo in 2022, from The Big Cat Sanctuary, as a recommended breeding partner for Irma, who has called the Midlands-based zoo home since 2010. The snow leopards are part of a European Ex-situ Programme, designed to help maintain healthy populations of the species in captivity and support the survival of their wild counterparts.

Over the past few months, a team of expert zoo keepers at Twycross Zoo have been slowly introducing the pair.

Snow leopards are an endangered species and are listed as ‘Vulnerable’ by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. They have a declining population of less than 4,000 individuals left in the wild due to the ongoing threats of habitat destruction for development and climate change.

To help protect snow leopard populations and ensure their future survival, the zoo has been involved in the EEP since Irma’s arrival in 2010 and has seen great success in this field with three sets of twin cubs born at the zoo since 2011. These cubs have all now moved to other zoos globally to continue maintaining the population.

Guests can benefit from Twycross Zoo’s brand-new annual ticket, allowing visitors to pay for a day and visit FREE for 12 months, and enjoy the value of a whole year of wild fun.

To book tickets online, visit

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