Two Ocelot Kittens Added to Zoo Family
Oz and Evita, the Greenville Zoo’s ocelot pair, welcomed their second litter on March 8 – an announcement zoo staff has delayed making until now to give the two kittens time to mature. They are now old enough to be introduced to zoo guests and will join their mother on exhibit this week. Oz, who will be kept separate while the kittens continue to mature, will remain in the regular ocelot exhibit and Evita and her kittens will occupy the first exhibit as you enter the South America area. The gender of the kittens will be determined during their neonatal exam, which will occur in the next couple of weeks. Once their gender is determined, the zoo will hold a naming contest, with proceeds going to support conservation efforts aimed at protecting ocelots in their natural habitats.
Six-year-old Evita was born January 15, 2011 at the Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle, Washington. Six-year-old Oz was born April 12, 2011 at the North Carolina Zoo. The two were sent to the Greenville Zoo in 2012 as a breeding pair and their first two kittens, which were born August 15, 2015, marked the first successful birth of this species for the Greenville Zoo.
Ocelots are found in every country south of the United States, except Chile, and occasionally range as far north as Texas. Their habitats include mangrove forests and coastal marshes, savanna grasslands and pastures and thorn scrub and tropical forests of all types. Ocelots are solitary and territorial nocturnal hunters, with eyesight six times greater than a human’s, and while they can climb trees and swim, they spend most of their time hunting on the ground. Below are some additional facts about ocelots:
Median life expectancy: 13.8 years
Gestation: 79 – 82 days
Number of young at birth: 1 – 4 (usually 1)
Female age of maturity: 18 – 22 months
Male age of maturity: 30 months
Length: 29 – 39 inches, with males larger than females
Tail length: 10 – 16 inches
Female weight: 14.5 – 25 pounds
Male weight: 15 – 34 pounds
Weight at birth: 7 – 12 ounces