The Belize Zoo and Tropical Education Center is saddened as Sylvia the jaguar, which was part of their family since 2017 has died.
The zoo recalls Sylvia first came to stay with them after they received an urgent call from residents of Sylvestre Village in northern Belize about a jaguar, documented on camera traps, which had killed and eaten several dogs.
Some residents were understandably upset, but also wanted to find a non-lethal solution.
The Belize Zoo rescued the female jaguar and named her “Sylvia” to honour the community which wanted to save her. Upon a thorough examination, it was found that she was missing a canine and had some dental issues in her bottom teeth.
After extensive veterinary care and rehabilitation, Sylvia eventually became one of the jaguar ambassadors at the Zoo and touched the lives of thousands of visitors with her new lease on life, including those from her former “backyard”.
The zoo says a hard start to life and ageing eventually caught up with Sylvia and she went to the forest in the sky due to renal failure. It is estimated Sylvia was more than 12 years old.
The Belize Zoo says it will never forget this charismatic cat and her profound impact on so many.
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