On Friday 13th July, 2012, the Emperor Valley Zoo was in a festive mood to mark the five year birthday of “Patches” the Ocelot, who is one of the several animal ambassadors here at the Emperor Valley Zoo. The scene was set for the occasion, lined with balloons, colourful signs and banners.
Patches would like to share some of her special moments with you, as captured in the photographs above.
Patches made her first appearance on July 13th 2007, when her mother gave birth to a single cub with an injured right leg. Unfortunately, the both parents abandoned the cub and stepping in to foster her were the zookeepers of the Emperor Valley Zoo. From that day till now, Patches has been a “star” as part of the Zoo To You and Zoo Outreach educational programmes. She is among the most popular of the exhibits and her much anticipated appearances are the highlight of any event.
To commemorate her special day, ZSTT Education Officer Rajin Gopie, ZSTT Biologist Ashana Gibran and a team of volunteers interning with the Zoological Society for their summer vacation, Leah De la Rosa, Ayana and Kesha Sooklal put together a birthday party at the zoo for her. Her day involved devouring a special cake made for her and invitees were also treated to balloon animals, face painting, presents for the visiting public and educational talks all through the day. She allowed visitors under supervision to pet her, take pictures with her and go as far as to allow patrons to hold her, all in her composed temperament. Aside from spending her day with the public she also spent it with some of her fellow animal ambassadors as well who all shared in the festivities.