Roosevelt Park Zoo announces passing of lioness ‘Jasira’

Lioness Jasira
Lioness Jasira(Roosevelt Park Zoo)
Published: Apr. 25, 2022 at 10:11 AM CDT
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MINOT, N.D. (KMOT) - The Roosevelt Park Zoo announced Monday they made the decision to humanely euthanize its longtime resident African lioness ‘Jasira’ Friday, after the animal developed health problems and lost its appetite.

Zoo Director Jeff Bullock said Jasira began showing behavioral changes several weeks ago, including her interaction with her mate Kiota, and quit eating, despite efforts from zoo staff to get her to eat.

Bullock said tests confirmed the animal had developed kidney issues, and would be difficult to treat, since the medication is taken orally.

“After a heart-felt animal management discussion, the team concluded that the kindest act at this point was to end her suffering,” said Bullock.

The 15-year-old lioness was born in October 2006 at the Pueblo Zoo in Colorado, and she and Kiota became the pride of the Roosevelt Park Zoo the following year.

The staff gave Kiota the chance to acknowledge his mate’s passing, and said they will monitor his behavior in the coming weeks, and consult with lion conservation experts to determine the next steps.

The zoo said they are grateful Jasira was able to spend her last years in the state-of-the-art Severson-Ahart African Lion Savannah exhibit. They also thanked members of the community who reached out to provide food for Jasira.

African lions are considered a ‘vulnerable’ species, according to their conservation status.

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