OKLAHOMA CITY – An adorable fishing kitten at the Oklahoma City Zoo has a new name.
On March 31, the fishing cat kitten was born via cesarean at the Oklahoma City Zoo’s Joan Kirkpatrick Animal Hospital. Officials say it is the first successful cesarean delivery for a fishing cat among Association of Zoos and Aquariums member zoos in North America.
Days after his birth, he was placed in the habitat to bond with his mother, 11-year-old Miri. However, she displayed no signs of maternal care, so the zoo’s veterinary team has been hand-rearing the kitten.
Now, he is almost 6-weeks-old and is bursting with energy. He is gaining weight and is becoming more active. Last week, the public was invited to vote for the kitten’s new name.
The top three names include:
- Angkor- largest temple in Cambodia
- Puddles – caretakers’ choice
- Kuttai- meaning ‘puddles’ in Sri Lankan.
After thousands of votes, zoo officials say the new kitten will be named ‘Puddles.’
Fishing cats are native to south and southeast Asia. Since 2016, they have been listed as ‘vulnerable’ on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s red list. Their populations have declined over the past decade since their habitats are being destroyed.