Baby leopards make Paris zoo debut

One of the Southeast Asian clouded leopards, (Neofelis Nebulosa) is seen at Jardin des Plantes Zoological in Paris, Thursday, July 22, 2010. The two female cubs, named Pati and Jaya, born on May 14, 2010, recently made their first public appearance. ((AP Photo/Francois Mori))

July 22, 2010 9:41:08 AM PDT
A Paris zoo has announced the birth of two rare Southeast Asian clouded leopards. The two female cubs, named Pati and Jaya, have made their first appearance to the public in recent days at the zoo in the Jardin des Plantes park.

They were born May 14. Out of tradition, the zoo didn't send out a birth announcement until now because it wanted to make sure the mother and babies were in good health.

Two other cubs were born last year to the same parents.

The cats, known for their gorgeous pelts, are threatened by poachers and loss of habitat in Southeast Asia and parts of China. The Smithsonian National Zoo says it is hard to estimate how many there are in the wild because they are reclusive.