Chattanooga Zoo Grieves The Loss Of Snow Leopard, Everest; Announces Arrival Of Orphaned Cougar Cubs

Thursday, January 31, 2013
Everest
Everest
- photo by Chattanooga Zoo

Everest, the Chattanooga Zoo’s four-month old snow leopard, has died. Zookeepers found Everest unmoving Wednesday morning in his enclosure.

Preliminary necropsy findings showed a large, likely congenital tumor in Everest’s heart which caused acute cardiac arrest. Dr. Anthony Ashley, Chattanooga Zoo veterinarian said that “since Everest displayed no outward signs of low energy, getting winded easily or listlessness, there was no reason for Zoo staff to suspect heart trouble. Therefore, sedating the cub for an echocardiogram would have been an unnecessary and likely fatal procedure.”

Bob Donnell, board certified Anatomic pathologist and associate professor at the University of Tennessee’s School of Veterinary Medicine said, “While congenital tumors in the heart cell wall are commonly found in human newborns, the occurrence in wild animals is typically pretty rare.” 

Everest is currently undergoing further histologic evaluation to determine whether or not the tumor was malignant or if any other factors might have contributed to his death. Results from this evaluation will be available within the next four to six weeks.

“The entire Zoo staff is completely shocked and devastated by the loss of Everest. We have lost a member of our family,” said Zoo Executive Director, Darde Long. “Although only four months old, Everest, was beginning to exhibit his own unique personality, love for family and the outdoors.”

Everest was born at the Chattanooga Zoo on Oct. 2, 2012. He is survived by his sister, Maliha, and parents, Czar and Kasimir.

As a tribute to Everest, the Chattanooga Zoo will contribute $2 of each paid admission this Saturday, to snow leopard conservation. Guests can write and hang farewell messages to Everest on the downstairs Himalayan Passage viewing window.

The zoo is announced the arrival of two five-month old cougar cubs. The brother and sister were found orphaned and starving in a chicken coop in Montana by Montana’s Fish, Wildlife and Park Services. It is
not clear what happened to the cubs’ mother but both cougars were severely emaciated upon rescue.

The cougars were picked up in Montana by Oregon Zoo staff, who then cared for the cubs until transfer to the Chattanooga Zoo, the cougars new home, could be arranged. The cougar cubs arrived safely in Chattanooga on Tuesday.

The male cub weighs 37 pounds and the female cub weighs 32.

“All of us at the Chattanooga Zoo are simply thrilled to have these two precious cougar cubs
here at our Zoo,” says Zoo Executive Director Darde Long. "Their story of survival sends a
wonderful conservation message and we feel privileged to provide them with a permanent home.”

The two cubs will share their home with existing Cougar Express resident, Mia Mia. Although still fairly shy, the cubs have formed a strong bond with each other and zoo staff is hopeful that bond will soon extend to zoo keepers and the zoo’s existing older cougar.

Given that the cubs were rescued from the wild, they will be in quarantine for the next three months. Once the quarantine period has been completed and the cubs show no health problems, the cubs will be released onto exhibit.


Marietta Hosts Distinguished Young Women Of Georgia State Finals

The Distinguished Young Women of Georgia Scholarship Program announced that it will welcome the Class of 2015 to Marietta this Sunday for the State Finals Week. Twenty-four young women from around the state will compete for $13,000 in college scholarships and a year of representing the program as the Distinguished Young Woman of Georgia for 2015.  The ... (click for more)

Personal Care Items Needed At The Salvation Army

The ReCreate Café helps the homeless in the community; however, personal care items are running low. Frequent travelers are asked to help by donating travel size products such as bar soap, deodorant, shampoo, toothpaste, disposable razors and feminine products. If you would like to host a donation drive, please call 423-756-1023 or bring your items to The Salvation Army, 822 ... (click for more)

DA Looking Into Issue Of County Commission Candidate's Campaign Sending Filled-Out Request For Absentee Ballot To Elderly Voters

The District Attorney's Office has been provided with documents that a County Commission candidate's campaign sent filled-out requests for absentee ballots to elderly voters. Kerry Steelman, election administrator, said there have been four instances in which such requests came from the Elect John Brooks campaign. He said state law says in Section 2-6-202:  (3) A person ... (click for more)

Graham Says County School-City Lawsuit Settlement "Stinks," But County Commission Approves It

The County Commission on Wednesday approved a settlement of a lawsuit brought by the Hamilton County Schools against the city of Chattanooga, though several commissioners said they were not happy with the deal and Commissioner Joe Graham said it "stinks." Commissioner Graham was the lone no vote. He was joined by Commissioner Tim Boyd in a failed effort to defer it a week. ... (click for more)

The Truth From Weston’s Sister - And Response (2)

I try not to read the negative articles and opinions about my older brother. Growing up around politics, I learned a long time ago that thick skin is not only necessary, it’s paramount. But this time, the lies and the rumors and the inaccurate information has gone too far. It’s too ridiculous for me to ignore. So let’s clear a few things up: Weston and I do not “come ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Oscar Brock’s True Passion

I don’t pay much attention to the Hamilton County School Board. Once the moon and the stars aligned behind Superintendent Rick Smith, you hear very little, if anything, from the nine-member council that oversees an annual budget of almost $400 million and employs 4,480 people. So chew this for a minute: approximately 2,000 of those people are not teachers. Yes, there are 78 principals ... (click for more)