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Front Page - Friday, August 11, 2017

Chattanooga Zoo welcomes new arrivals

The tomistoma is a freshwater crocodilian. - Submitted

The collection of animals at the Chattanooga Zoo has once again expanded.

Through the zoo’s partnership with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ SSP, the zoo has acquired two sand cats from the Exotic Feline Breeding Compound’s Feline Conservation Center in Rosamond, California. These solitary creatures are native to the deserts of North Africa and Central Asia.

The conservation status of the sand cat is classified as “least concern” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Rameses, a 9-month-old male, and Bastet, a 1-year-old female, are a recommended breeding pair. They are on exhibit in the Deserts of the World building.

The Chattanooga Zoo has expanded its reptile collection by acquiring three tomistomas from the San Antonio Zoo. The tomistomas were hatched by seasoned parents approximately 10 months ago and arrived at the Chattanooga Zoo last month. Their genders are not determined yet.

The tomistoma is a freshwater crocodilian native to the areas of Malaysia, Sarawak, Indonesia and Thailand. The tomistoma is classified by the IUCN as “vulnerable.” The three are on exhibit in the Zoo’s Himalayan Passage exhibit building.

The Warner Park Ranch petting area has expanded by six goats, which includes three different breeds. The Chattanooga Zoo has acquired two male Nigerian dwarf goats, two female Saanen goats and two female Nubian goats. These goats are 5 months old, except for the two Nigerian goats, which are 4 months old.

After a 30-day quarantine period, the goats will be exhibited in the petting area of the Warner Park Ranch exhibit, where they will interact with guests.

In addition to the animal acquisitions, the Chattanooga Zoo has also strengthened its conservation initiatives through the hatching of two spotted turtles. The two turtles, Freckles and Speckles, hatched on July 6 to first-time parents, Spot and Dot.

Spotted turtles are native to the east coast of North America. Spotted turtles are classified by the IUCN as “endangered.” The Zoo plans to have them on exhibit in the Forests of the World building soon.

The Zoo is open daily 9 a.m.-5 p.m. except for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. Information: www.chattzoo.org.

Source: Chattanooga Zoo