Lake Superior Zoo’s Pallas’ Cats Artificially Inseminated

By KBJR News 1

March 21, 2012 Updated Mar 21, 2012 at 9:54 AM CDT

Duluth, MN - (Northland's NewsCenter) -Zoo officials in Duluth are doing their part to help endangered species.

This morning veterinarians from the Cincinnati Zoo artificially inseminated two of the zoo's Pallas' cats.

A wild Pallas cat from Mongolia served as the donor for the procedure.

In June of 2011 three healthy Pallas' cat kittens were born at the Cincinnati Zoo following artificial insemination conducted by scientists and veterinarians at the zoo's Center for Conservation and Research of Endangered Wildlife...and today they brought their research to the Northland.

Cincinnati Zoo veterinarian, Bill Swanson says that creating such connections between captive and wild populations is a vital component of effective conservation efforts.

"The populations are declining, but we're trying to maintain a viable population in captivity. They're only about 40 Pallas' cats in North American zoos, so if we can bring in more gene variation or gene diversity with frozen semen, it's going to really help us maintain that population."

The semenation process lasted roughly an hour and a half.
Zoo officials won't know if the procedure was successful for about 40 days.

Danyel Piecek