A jaguar cub born two weeks ago at the Living Desert won't be on exhibit for several months, but the public can catch a peek via a newly installed "jag-cam'' that also gives caretakers the ability to closely monitor the newest member of the den.
The as-yet unnamed cub was born Jan. 26 to 7-year-old mother Magia and 6-year-old father Memo.
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"Animal births are always exciting and we are happy to see that Magia and her cub are doing so well,'' said Allen Moore, the Living Desert's president and CEO.
"It has been such a unique opportunity to see her bonding with and nurturing her cub through our new jag-cam,'' he said. "And, we are delighted to be able to offer the public the chance to see Magia and her cub through this behind-the-scenes viewing opportunity on our website.''
The cub's weight, sex and development will be assessed Saturday during a live "gender reveal'' event that can be viewed live online here.
Guests can also weigh in next month on a name for the cub at the zoo's Zoobilee Gala, during which a chance to name the cub will be auctioned off.
Magia and the cub will be remain off-exhibit for the next couple months, though Memo will be available for viewing on exhibit and during the zoo's daily 9:30 a.m. jaguar keeper chat.
"Magia has proven to be a great mother. We continue to be cautiously optimistic through the first couple of weeks of development and look forward to the public being able to see the cub and Magia online now and on exhibit in the coming months,'' said RoxAnna Breitigan, the zoo's director of Animal Programs.
Zoo officials said their new addition helps bolster the jaguar population, currently considered "near threatened'' by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, meaning the species is relatively abundant, but faces threats of habitat loss and poaching.
"Memo and Magia were brought together by a recommendation of the Species Survival Plan, an international cooperative conservation program, and this birth will help contribute to the future of the species,'' Brietigan said.