Wednesday, November 27, 2013


Next month, after “Mira” is out of quarantine, visitors can see this beautiful jungle cat, who is 12 years old.  Her elderly owner, founder of the South Florida Wildlife Rehabilitation Center in Homestead, has a terminal illness and he contacted state wildlife officials to help him find homes for his animals.

The Palm Beach Zoo and Conservation Society at Dreher Park is excited about their new resident and they say she is very affectionate with humans, and appears to have been well loved and cared for in her last home.  Yet, panthers are known to be solitary animals.  About 80 to 100 panthers remain in Florida, and they are now one of the most rare and endangered mammals in the world.  The Panther National Wildlife Refuges is east of Naples, Florida.  Panthers are at great risk of extinction.

Mira has a few health problems, including curvature of the spine, but otherwise is doing well. General curator Jan Steel says that having Mira, a “pure” Florida panther, is exciting and “It allows us to show the differences between the western cougar or puma and the Florida panther.

Three Malayan tiger brothers, Jaya, Bunga and Penari have left the Palm Beach Zoo for a new home at the Jacksonville Zoo.  Since 1900 the wild tiger population has decreased by more than 95% and there is a Tiger Conservation Campaign among zoos.  The Wildlife without Borders Rhinoceros and Tiger Conservation Fund funded 53 projects in 15 countries for these conservation project,  implemented by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, a federal agency of the Department of the Interior.  Here is more information.  The tiger pictured above is at the Smithsonian Zoo in Washington DC.

The Zoo recently added “and Conservation Society” to its name to stress they provide care for endangered species, which has been part of their agenda for a long time.

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