AKRON -- Meet Raj and Sabu. The two snow leopards that were born at the Akron Zoo earlier this year finally have their own names.
Akron Zoo officials say their naming contest for the leopards, which ran from Aug. 10 through Aug. 20, brought in nearly 4,000 votes.
Sabu received 974 votes. It is the Tibetan word for snow leopard. Raj, which nabbed 920 votes, means "king" or "ruler" in India.
The three other names people could vote on were:
- Tai, which means "mountain" in Mongolic language and is where the snow leopards inhabit.
- Layan, which is short for Himalayn Mountains where snow leopards are indigenous.
- Kovo, which means "strong."
The cubs havebeen on exhibit daily from 10:15 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. since Aug. 13. They will continue that schedule until they are big enough to stay out longer.
Raj and Sabu were born at the zoo on May 14.
Earlier this year, the Akron Zoo held a naming contest for their new octopus. The aquatic creature ultimately used its tentacles to select Cora as its name. That naming contest sucked in 2,220 votes.
Snow leopards are an endangered species and only nine have been born so far this year that are part of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums Specials Survival Plan in the United States. According to the Akron Zoo, snow leopards are an endangered species primarily due to loss of habitat, illegal poaching for their pelts and body parts and killings by local herders when a snow leopard has preyed on their livestock.
There are only believed to be as few as 4,000 left in the wild.