Big Cats: On the prowl
Stroll along our very own “catwalk” to see sleek, powerful felines in their gorgeous fur coats. Each species has its own enclosure, designed with the animals’ need in mind; the enclosures come complete with climbing structures, hammocks, logs, scratching posts, snug caves, and a high wall in back when the cat wants a bird’s-eye view of its surroundings.
Five cat species make their home along the Big Cat Trail. The smallest of these is the Siberian lynx, the largest in the lynx family. A subspecies of the Eurasian lynx, it has long, thick, light-colored fur that is silky in the winter, shorter, thinner, and darker-colored in the summer.
Snow leopards are native to the mountainous regions of Central Asia. A mural along the back wall helps set the scene. Our “snows” enjoy their rocky perches and the pine trees in their enclosure.
Mountain lion, cougar, puma—this cat is known by more names than just about any other mammal! Powerfully built, the mountain lion’s large paws, sharp claws, and muscular hind legs give it great jumping power.
It may be challenging to spot our Chinese leopard, but the large cat is well worth the effort. Please keep in mind that leopards are nocturnal, doing most of their hunting at night and saving the daylight hours for rest.
Our jaguar is the scene-stealer of the bunch. This rain forest native has a waterfall and small pool to splash in.