Jaguar at Lee Richardson Zoo loses battle with age, cancer


Photo courtesy Lee Richardson Zoo, Garden City.

GARDEN CITY, Kan. (KSNW) — Lee Richardson Zoo in Garden City says its black jaguar Amelia died Sunday.

Amelia was 23 years old and suffering from reproductive and mammary cancer. The zoo says she had geriatric health issues for the past three years.

She was euthanized Sunday due to declining health.

The median life expectancy for a jaguar in human care is 18 years.

Amelia arrived at Lee Richardson Zoo in 1998 with her sister. The sister died in 2017. The zoo decided not to bring in another jaguar at that time in order not to add stress to Amelia at her age.

Now that Amelia has passed, the zoo says it will work with the Jaguar Species Survival Plan to get another jaguar.

It wants to raise awareness that jaguars are critically endangered in the U.S. and classified as near threatened worldwide due to habitat loss (deforestation) and overhunting.

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