“Marosa,” the jaguar at Great Bend’s Brit Spaugh Zoo, was euthanized in April, Zoo Director Scott Gregory said. She was in her 20s, which is the expected lifespan of a jaguar in captivity, Zoo Curator Marge Bowen said. Due to her advanced age, Marosa had a number of health problems. Brit Spaugh Zoo administrators estimate between one-half to two-thirds of the zoo’s animals are geriatric. If the zoo is successful in its bid for accreditation with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, they should have access to younger animals via exchanges or donations.
Two chameleons are the newest occupants of the Reptile House at Great Bend’s Brit Spaugh Zoo, according to Zoo Curator Marge Bowen.
Although these 3-inch lizards can blend in with their surroundings, they have a distinctive look that makes them easy to tell apart. The one zoo staff named “Tecks” is a bright green sengal chameleon, although like most chameleons, it can change color. Next door to Tecks is “Specks,” a spotted carpet chameleon.
Other reptiles on display in the Reptile House include a plated lizard and a great plains rat snake.
Zoo Director Scott Gregory said the Brit Spaugh Zoo is gearing up for an inspection from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. A date has not been set, but three inspectors have been chosen from zoos in other states.
Several events will take place next month, Gregory said.
On Friday, June 1, the zoo will hold an after-hours fundraiser, “June Jam in the Zoo,” featuring barbecue, live music, GPS scavenger hunts and other events to benefit the Great Bend Zoological Society. Although the zoo, located in the park at 2123 Main St., is free seven days a week during regular hours, this event will start at 4:30 p.m. and admission will be $10 for anyone 13 years old and up, $5 for kids 4-12 years old, and free to those 3 and under.
On Saturday, June 2, the eighth annual Nex-Tech Zoo Fest will be held at the zoo. This free event always draws a crowd.
In the next week, the Great Bend Recreation Commission will start taking enrollments for summer day camps at the zoo, which start June 4.