Fifi, an orphaned ocelot cub at the Belize Zoo
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August 6, 2022

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The Belize Zoo & Tropical Education Center. The Belize Zoo is settled upon 29 acres of tropical savanna and exhibits over 125 animals all native to Belize. Zoo SceneThe zoo keeps animals which were either orphaned, born at the zoo, rehabilitated animals, or sent to The Belize Zoo as gifts from other zoological institutions. The Belize Zoo believes that by bringing the people of Belize closer to the animals which are their natural heritage, they will feel proud of these special resources, and want to protect them for future generations.
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Fifi, an orphaned ocelot cub at the Belize Zoo

Here's a story in Channel 7 News from December, 2020 when Fifi was rescued:

She was rescued in Spanish Lookout after the flooding in that area displaced her from her mother. Now, the caretakers at the zoo are raising her. The cub is going on five weeks old and is in good health. Today we spoke with the General Curator at the zoo, Humberto Wohlers, who told us Fifi's backstory.

Humbert Wohlers, General Curator, The Belize Zoo
"This gentleman, Mr Lindo Padilla from Belmopan, was driving out from Spanish Lookout and while he was driving out he heard some cries, like cat cries, meows, and he stopped and looked closely and in his view he said he saw a cat and he immediately said well it's a jaguar cub so he waited to see if the mother would appear. He waited for osme time but there was no sign and then he decided to pick it up and bring it to the zoo. When it was brought to the zoo it was identified as a female ocelot rather than a jaguar. But it was all because of the floods that were happening during those days."

"When the Ocelot was brought, there was a little bit of dehydration, probably being out there alone for some time. Normally when we acquire new animals we look at the body condition and the weight and all that and determine what we gonna do, how are we gonna start this feeding process. When we received it, it weighed a pound, four ounces, and we were estimating about 2-3 weeks old and right now she's 2 pound 4 ounces, so she has increased a lot."

"If she get in good health and already we could be able to introduce it to other ocelots. We have to do a slow introduction where we have to put her next with other ocelots to recognize, establish the area, visually see the other ocelots."

"And so eventually we will have to do a slow introduction in the large area and then eventually if we could integrate it with another one."

The Belize Zoo provides high quality care and enrichment for the 200+ native animals that call the Zoo home.

They, in turn, continue to be ambassadors for their species and reinforce the vital role wildlife play in our lives, and the importance of preserving our natural world.

Storms and floods also bring new rescued animals to our doors, like this orphaned ocelot cub, and we turn none away.

Photograph by the Belize Zoo

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