SEATTLE – A female ocelot born in January at Woodland Park Zoo is ready to greet the public.
Evita was born to 10-year-old Bella and 15-year-old father, Brazil.
According to staff, the 5 1/2-pound kitten is healthy, playful and has exceeded all of the physical and mental benchmarks. Her favorite activity is chasing her mom’s tail.
An endangered species, ocelots are small spotted cats that range throughout Mexico, Central and South America to northern Argentina, with remnant populations in the southwestern United States. The nocturnal cats are three to four times the size of an average domestic house cat, weighing on average 24 to 35 pounds and averaging 2½ to 5 feet in length.
In the wild, ocelots continue to lose ground with their ever-shrinking habitat and black market pet trade. Only 100 or so are thought to remain in the U.S.
The best times to view the kitten and mom are between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. in the Tropical Rain Forest exhibit.