On May 17, this little Jaguar cub came into the world, born to Krefeld Zoo’s breeding pair Bess and Porgy. This is the second offspring for the parents in their time at the zoo. It was a difficult birth, but mother and cub got to do the necessary bonding for the first week of his life. At that juncture, Bess suffered from an inflammation of the uterus, and had to be treated under general anesthesia for the condition. Fortunately, she made a full recovery, reunited with her cub, and has been doing a great job of caring for her baby ever since.
At his recent health check, keepers had their hands full trying to subdue the little fella. He’s a feisty one! The cub has grown to weigh about 8.8 pounds (4 kilos), so he should start to venture out into the habitat sometime next week. A camera has been installed in the birthing box so zoo visitors can watch Mom and cub on a TV screen in front of their exhibit, while the pair remains behind the scenes.
Jaguars, the largest cats in the Americas, are threatened in the wild by massive conversions of their natural habitats for human economic interests, being shot or poisoned by livestock owners, and the depletion of the cat's natural prey due to overhunting. There are several organizations whose work is devoted to helping on all of these fronts, to preserve this beautiful species.
See more photos after the fold: