The Cape May County Zoo says Himani, their female Snow Leopard, has died following a battle with cancer.

Officials say she was peacefully euthanized on Friday.

According to a press release from the zoo,

Himani was born in June 2003 and came to the Cape May County Zoo in 2009 from the Knoxville Zoo. Upon her arrival, she was paired with Vijay, the Zoo's male Snow Leopard, and over the next 4 years, Himani and Vijay would successfully rear four litters of cubs. Himani proved to be an excellent mother, successfully raising seven healthy and strong cubs. Her accomplishment had impacts felt throughout the Country.

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Himani's cubs, after they matured, went to other zoos across the country where they raised cubs of their own.

Dr. Alex Ernst, Associate Veterinarian at the Zoo, said in a statement, "Himani was an incredible mother, and an important member of our Zoo family, she will certainly be missed by the staff and visitors. We feel fortunate that she was here with us during the past 12 years. Her contributions to the conservation of her species and to the future of the Cape May County Zoo are immeasurable."

"I want to thank the Zoo Veterinarians and Zoo Staff for their care and dedication as they cared for Himani during her battle with cancer. She will be missed", said County Commissioner E. Marie Hayes, liaison to the Cape May County Parks and Zoo.

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