Cheetah dies at new zoo

04:56, May 29 2014
Cheetah
SAD OUTCOME: Five-year-old brothers Cango and Shomari were meant to be settling in to their new home at Wellington Zoo, but Shomari died soon after arriving.

One of Wellington's two new cheetahs has died at its new home.

Yesterday afternoon five-year-old brothers Cango and Shomari travelled from Orana Wildlife Park in Christchurch to the capital's zoo where Shomari was found unconscious, Wellington Zoo spokeswoman Charlotte Whitelaw said.

"Shomari was unconscious on arrival and our vets worked tirelessly through the night to save him but were unable to.''

"We are all deeply saddened by his tragic passing.''

Cango is said to be doing well and is now in his new enclosure at the zoo.

Orana Wildlife Park staff said they were "devastated".

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They described Shomari as "a personable cat" who endeared himself to staff.

An autopsy would confirm the cause of death.

Whitelaw said an investigation was under way with Orana Park to establish what happened leading up to Shomari's death.

Shomari, along with siblings Cango, Kunjuka and Mazza, was rejected by their mother shortly after their birth in 2009. Orana Park keepers worked around the clock, raising them by hand, to ensure their survival.

The Dominion Post