The Greenville Zoo transferred its 6-year-old Amur leopard, Emerald, to the Sedgwick Zoo in Wichita, Kansas, on Friday.
The transfer is one of many conservation efforts made by the zoo to protect the endangered species. Since 2010, the zoo has donated to the Amur Leopard and Tiger Alliance through its “Quarters for Conservation” program.
The zoo brought Emerald and her two female siblings – Clover and Jade – to Greenville in 2011. And in 2013, Clover was transferred to a North Dakota zoo.
Jade is the last remaining leopard at the Greenville Zoo. But according to the zoo, it’s in the process of importing a 10-year-old male Amur leopard from Germany that was recommended for transfer to breed with Jade.
“This is a very important move for the population, as it will introduce another bloodline into the North American population,” said zoo administrator Jeff Bullock.
There are approximately 200 captive Amur leopards in the world, according to the Amur Leopard and Tiger Alliance.
The incoming addition to the zoo’s big cat family is a part of its new mission.
“The public will be hearing a lot more about the conservation efforts going on at the Greenville Zoo, as we have taken a long look inward to focus on why we’re here,” said Bullock. “From that, we have revisited and refocused the zoo’s vision, mission and values, and have developed principles that will guide us as we continue to move forward.”