Zoo Opens Snow Leopard Pass and Colobus Crossing

CONTACT: Kyle Shepherd
Direct: 502-238-5331  |  Media Only: 502-744-5639

LOUISVILLE, March 27, 2019 — The much-anticipated Snow Leopard Pass and Colobus Crossing exhibits opened to the public today. The opening of these two exhibits represents the final projects funded by the Zoo’s most recent Leadership Campaign.

Snow Leopard Pass

Snow Leopard Pass is themed after a small Himalayan village in Nepal where, out of necessity, humans and snow leopards are learning to coexist. Guests will be able to view the snow leopards walking above their heads through passage ways that cross over the Zoo walkways and through a large viewing window overlooking the main habitat. The exhibit, featuring beautiful rock formations and granite boulders, may also provide guests a glimpse of the cat’s climbing and leaping abilities. Tibetan colors and themed carvings are found throughout the exhibit and prayer flags line the courtyard.  The new exhibit connects to Tiger Taiga (formerly Tiger Tundra) which features Amur tigers.

Guests will be able to watch a daily training session with the snow leopards from the upper viewing space. The daily training schedule will be determined soon.

Adjacent to the main exhibit is The Cub House presented by PNC, the Zoo’s new and only dedicated space for early childhood learning. The Cub House features numerous ways to play, explore, investigate and discover for children ages 3, 4 and 5 years old with expanded education programming. The classroom provides nose-to-nose views into the main exhibit and also features a slide for young children so they can climb just like the snow leopards.

Snow Leopards, native to central Asia and the Himalayas, are facing increasing strife due to human encroachment and are being hunted because of their proximity to people and livestock.

Snow Leopard Pass is home to two male snow leopards, Kimti and Meru, and a female named NeeCee.

Colobus Crossing

The passages theme continues in the new Colobus Crossing exhibit located in the Africa zone. Guests are able to enjoy lunch on the expanded African Outpost deck while watching monkeys climbing and leaping throughout their new outdoor habitat. Colobus Crossing features enriching spaces including numerous climbing structures and training platforms that connect to overhead passage ways and an indoor space. The exhibit passages mimic those being built in Kenya, called “colobridges”, allowing a safe way for the primates and other wildlife to cross busy roads.

Colobus monkeys Radi, Sheldon, Leonard and Rajesh can be identified by their black-and-white coloration and flowing white tails. In addition to colobus monkeys, the exhibit will feature Schmidt’s red-tailed monkeys, another African primate species that will be integrated into the exhibit later this spring. Schmidt’s red-tailed monkeys Ahnmom, Chi Chi and Indi will be easily distinguished from the colobus monkeys by their white noses, red tails and puffy white cheek pouches.  Both species are native to Kenya and are arboreal.


The Louisville Zoo, a non-profit organization and state zoo of Kentucky, is dedicated to bettering the bond between people and our planet by providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for visitors, and leadership in scientific research and conservation education. The Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).