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Tony Parker Names the New Jaguar Cubs at the San Antonio Zoo

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The San Antonio Zoo became the proud caretakers of two newborn jaguar cubs on September 6, 2016. According to the San Antonio Zoo news release, this is the “first significant births of the species since 1974” at the zoo.

The two newest jaguar cubs are part of a dwindling population in which there is only 15,000 worldwide. They give hope that we can not only prevent the extinction of jaguars but strengthen their community as well.

Naming of the Cubs

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Photo: Facebook/CCTV

During the funding raising event at the Zoobilation Ball, Spurs’ Point Guard, Tony Parker, won the right to name the two cubs. This past Tuesday, amid all the fanfare to celebrate the newest cubs, he named them after his niece and nephew: Milan and Liam.

Tony Parker explained his love of the San Antonio Zoo and the animals in their care. Before his game Tuesday night, he spent time playing tug of war with Arizona, the mama jaguar. One of the cubs can be seen trying to help out mom, but Arizona looks to be the winner of this round.

Endangered Species

tony-parker-jaguars

Photo: Facebook/Scott Chidgey

Jaguars are on the near extinction list and are part of the Association of Zoos and Aquarium’s Species Survival Plan. This plan aims to work with participating zoos and aquariums to “maintain a healthy, genetically diverse and demographically stable population for the long-term future.”

The birth of the cubs not only brings much-needed attention to this species but helps to educate the community at large about this breed. The zoo’s participation helps to not only safely breed the jaguars in order to prevent extinction, but give the cubs a place to safely bond to their mother, as well as encourage natural behavior.

Jaguar Exhibit

catwalk

Photo: Facebook/San Antonio Zoo

The San Antonio Zoo is looking to expand the jaguar exhibit, which will include “a one-in-a-kind cat walk.” This catwalk helps to reinforce the natural behavior of the jaguars where they can “hang from a high canopy type setting and allows them to explore the river’s edge.”

Come visit Arizona and her cubs Liam and Milan at the San Antonio Zoo. And while you’re there, check out the other 3,500 animals that you can find on the 35 acres.