Visitors at Germany's Berlin Zoo are getting their first glimpse of an Ocelot kitten born on October 26. For the first eight weeks of his life, the baby has been behind the scenes with his mother Sarah. An experienced mother of eight, Sarah has taken excellent care of her little one.
Once the kitten was introduced to his outdoor habitat at the zoo, he began to explore and practice his prowling skills. He is already an adept climber.
The kitten’s father, Prazak, has so far not been in contact with his baby. Sarah and Prazak were separated before the birth to reduce potential conflicts between the pair. The kitten will stay by his mother’s side for 10 months. In the wild, this is when Ocelots are weaned and able to live on their own.
Ocelots inhabit areas of dense cover and hunt for prey at night. Their adaptability to a variety of habitats – from jungles to scrubland – has helped them thrive in many areas.
Widespread throughout Mexico, Central America, and South America, Ocelots were once listed as Vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, but they were reclassified as Least Concern in the 1990s. A small population of about 50 Ocelots exists in Texas and Arizona in the United States, but numbers have fallen by more than half in the last two decades.