RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Metro Richmond Zoo owner Jim Andelin says an infection is the likely cause of a cheetah cub’s death.
Zoo staff found the cub, named Hanna, dead in her overnight shelter on May 4.
Andelin tells media outlets that test results indicate a fast-acting bacterial infection began in the cub’s gastrointestinal tract. Efforts to identify the bacterium’s source were inconclusive.
The 7-month-old cub was the runt of the litter and had a mild heart condition. Andelin says those factors could have compromised her immune system.
Hanna was one of five cubs born at the zoo on Oct. 6, 2013. Andelin says the other cubs have tested negative for the bacterium. They are being monitored.
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The hurricane missed the region, but heavy rain is still expected.