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Ocelot Recovery and Translocation Project

Mon, July 11, 2022 7:11 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

In the fall of 2017, Friends entered into a 5-year cooperative agreement with the USFWS working on ocelot recovery and translocation. Funding will be used by the Friends to contract researchers and other personnel to conduct monitoring and translocate ocelots from larger populations in Mexico to Texas, as well as for the restoration of areas in Texas to provide additional acres of habitat for the endangered ocelots currently in Texas. Although a few ocelots are currently being monitored in Arizona, a female ocelot has not been documented there in over 30 years. Texas, meanwhile, has two populations that range in number of about 50 individuals that are breeding but also in need of assistance for recovery. The Service is working with multiple partners to acquire and protect existing habitat, restore habitats, increase connectivity across the landscape, build functional wildlife crossings, work with international partners to document the status of ocelots across the landscape, and exchange ocelots between countries to maintain a higher genetic diversity than exists in Texas today. The severity of inbreeding caused by low population numbers due to the loss of ocelot habitat is a significant concern raised by the Ocelot Recovery Team and numerous partners. The low genetic diversity represented in the Texas populations could result in significant reproductive challenges and weaknesses in combating naturally-occurring diseases. Translocation from the more robust populations in Mexico has been identified as the best means to reduce the threats posed by low genetic diversity.

Friends of Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. 
22688 Buena Vista Rd., Los Fresnos, TX 78566

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