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Beardsley Zoo’s ocelot Kuma, has died

May 24, 2019

BRIDGEPORT — The Beardsley Zoo announced that its 14-year-old Brazilian ocelot, Kuma, has died.

In a Facebook Post Thursday, the zoo said she died from natural causes.

Kuma, who was brought to the Beardsley Zoo in September 2007, was a guest favorite.

“Kuma was one of the most beloved animals in our zoo family,” said Zoo Director Gregg Dancho. “From her favorite spot in the tree in her habitat, she inspired a love of wildlife in many zoo guests over the years.”

Brazilian ocelots are becoming increasingly endangered, according to a zoo press release.

Kuma was accidentally injured by her father as a young kitten, losing her left rear leg and tail. She was unable to breed naturally and was one of only five Brazilian ocelots in the past 20 years to successfully give birth by artificial insemination.

Her two daughters, Milagre and Alya, now reside at the Dallas Zoo and the Buffalo Zoo, respectively. Both females have bred naturally and produced kittens of their own.

In North American zoos, a small number of ocelots are managed by the Ocelot Species Survival Plan. Through her daughters, Kuma now has five grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. Her descendants represent almost one-third of all Brazilian ocelots in the SSP population.

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