There’s an old wives’ tale that bad news is revealed on Friday afternoons. Not is always the case. This afternoon Dallas Zoo’s Lydia Jennings apologized for the late release of the news that the Cat Row in Zoo North would be closing with the residents (ocelots, mountain lions and bobcats) headed to other digs.
It seems that the “current exhibit — Cat Row in Zoo North — does not adequately reflect the updated, naturalist habitats the zoo strives to provide for animals.”
According to Dallas Zoo VP of Animal Operations and Welfare Harrison Edell, “As one of the nation’s top zoos, we pride ourselves on continuously evolving and building bigger and better habitats for our animals. Cat Row doesn’t reflect Dallas Zoo’s progressive philosophy of care. There’s no doubt our cats are well cared for, and live enriched lives here – their home just doesn’t represent our growth and vision, and it’s time for change.
“Moving these amazing cats wasn’t an easy decision, but it’s what’s best for them. We’re confident they’ll live safe, healthy lives in their new homes. We want nothing more than for our guests to fall in love with wildlife in the right setting, and to support us as we find ways to create a better world for animals.”
The good news is that plans call for bobcat Rufus to leave on Tuesday, September 26, for the Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center in Scottsdale, Arizona; for ocelots Joaquin and Milagre to call New Orleans’ Audubon Zoo home; and for mountain lion fellas Apollo and Lakai to go to Bridgeport’s Center for Animal Research and Education.
In its place the plan is to “use Cat Row as a much-needed extension to its outdoor event space” lie Halloween Nights and Dallas Zoo Lights.
Official going-away-festivities will take place on Saturday, September 30, and Sunday, October, 1.
Wasn’t it earlier this month that the Zoo announced the departure of the Australian critters due to construction along I-35E? Such is progress.