A report by Selina Denman for The National News.
Arare albino jaguarundi cub has been rescued in Colombia.
The first of its kind to be discovered in the country, the cub was given medical treatment and then transferred to the Conservation Park of Medellin. Authorities worked with the fire department to rescue the cub, which was discovered four hours from an urban area in the Corantioquia region.
The park released a video of the cub, which is the size of a kitten, having its teeth and paws checked, being bottle fed, nibbling on a handler’s hands and settling into its new home.
The cub is completely white with red eyes, owing to its inability to produce any pigmentation, and this colouring will limit its ability to conceal itself, hunt and survive in the wild. Also, since melanin helps protect skin from sunlight, albino animals often face a higher risk of developing melanoma.
Jaguarundi are a species of wild cat native to the Americas, with a range that extends from Mexico to Argentina. The slender, medium-sized animal is defined by its narrow head and small, round ears, and is generally about double the size of a domestic cat.
Though the name suggests otherwise, the jaguarundi are more closely linked to the cougar than the jaguar. While the species faces some threats, it is not considered to be as endangered as the jaguar.