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Waco: Zoo’s New Ocelot Kitten Ventures Outside

Aztec with his mother, Maya. (Zoo photo)

Aztec with his mother, Maya. (Zoo photo)

WACO (October 4, 2013)--An ocelot kitten named Aztec that was born in May at the Cameron Park Zoo has ventured into the public exhibit yard for the first time.

Until now, Aztec hasn’t been big enough to manage the exhibit yard, but he now weighs six pounds and is able to maneuver the yard successfully with his mother, zoo officials said.

He and his mother should be on display daily, weather permitting.

Times will be posted on the zoo’s website.

Aztec was the first infant born to the zoo’s ocelots, Maya and Gustavo and his arrival caught zookeepers by surprise.

Maya, is 14-years-old, somewhat past the prime age for reproduction, and in November 2012 an attempt by a team of veterinary specialists from the Center for Conservation and Research for Endangered Wildlife from the Cincinnati zoo assisted by Cameron Park Zoo veterinarian Terry Hurst to artificially inseminate her with semen from the zoo’s male ocelot Gustavo was unsuccessful.

Months later, however, on May 31, Maya was left in her night house because she appeared not to be feeling well and later that morning zookeepers discovered the ocelot kitten.

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