AP NEWS

Endangered leopard with liver failure dies at Florida zoo

January 17, 2019

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — A critically endangered Amur leopard in declining health has died at a Florida zoo.

The Florida Times-Union reports the 18-year-old leopard named Makarii was euthanized Tuesday at the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens. Spokeswoman JJ Vitale says Makarii was suffering from kidney failure, a common cause of death for older cats. She says the zoo provided Makarii with supportive care for “as long as we could.”

Makarii had three litters of cubs with his mate, 17-year-old Nicolai. Vitale says the zoo isn’t planning to bring in another leopard as Amur leopards are solitary cats.

Amur leopards are native to Russia and China and have an average lifespan of 10 to 15 years in the wild. The World Wildlife Fund says they’re critically endangered largely due to poaching.

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Information from: The (Jacksonville) Florida Times-Union, http://www.jacksonville.com

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