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5-6 (2010)
Viewed: 1704

The Sochi nursery for leopards was replenished with thoroughbred congeners. Prime minister Vladimir Putin, at who's suggestion the rehabilitation centre got the Olympic status, personally let out two females of the leopard brought from Iran to the open-air cage.

In №№ 9-10 «Olympic Reporter» already told about the unique project of returning of West Asian leopard — snow leopard to the wild nature. It is the first-ever precedent of returning of the rare representative of the large predators recorded in the Red Book to a natural habitat. There are not more than 400 leopards in the world. Highly in mountains, on the territory of the Sochi national park, was built the House for leopards — the strategic closed object with the area of 12 hectares with spacious open-air cages and small town for scientists. The first leopards — the males General and Alous were brought from Turkmenia. Now lonely males have girlfriends. Two tigers went to Iran from the Far East, and two females of a leopard went to Sochi, — tells the scientific curator of the project, Doctor of Biology, the professor, the academician of Russian Academy of Natural Sciences, the Honoured ecologist of Russia Anatoly Kudaktin. Now the inhabitants of nursery are supervised by means of videocameras round-the-clock. The place for independent rehabilitation of leopards to life in wild nature is chosen very successfully. There are a lot of steep hills and shelters, there are spent actions for restoration of number of ungulate animals — the main food of leopards. Experts predict that in process of development of adjacent territories natives of the nursery will start to contact to alien leopards. Thus, they will create a core of the future population.

Noah's ark for a leopard

Namibia became famous in the world for its care of flora and fauna. No other country has legislation with so strongly pronounced ecological orientation. Farm-reserve «Harnas» is called «Noah's ark» of Namibia. Here animals are not only kept, but also sick and crippled animals are nursed, the deserted calfes are brought up. The reserve history began in 1978, when its owners Niko and Mariette van der Merve for five rands and a loaf bought a monkey out of people beating it. Then spouses began to breed wild bat-eared fox, which is under the threat of extinction in the south of Africa…

Keeping of animals is not cheap. For example, keeping of a leopard costs ten thousand dollars a year. Donations and system of «adoption» of animals help.

Animal interest

The world fund of the wild nature (WWF) has made a rating of the «Olympic» champions among animals. Gold medal in sprint gets cheetah, the fastest mammal in the world. Thanks to aerodynamics of the body it picks up speed up to 112 km/h. The winner in high jumps is a tiger. It can jump 5 meters height and 10 meters length. The best swimmer — a polar bear. It can keep 10 km/h speed in ice water. It can swim for some hours, covering distances up to 100 km, and be under water without air for about two minutes. Number one in weightlifting — the African elephant. It easily lifts a ton with its trunk.

Author: Irina Varlamova