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Cougars Jack and Diane finally return to Alexandria Zoo

Published: Apr. 14, 2021 at 7:34 PM CDT
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - The famous cougars Jack and Diane were brought back home to their new habitat at the Alexandria Zoo for the first time since August.

The brother-sister pair has been temporarily living at the Baton Rouge Zoo after fallen trees damaged their habitat during Hurricane Laura. Zoo Director Dr. Max Lakes said they are thankful the cougars were safe during the storm and have been taken care of since. Dr. Lakes said he was ready to meet the cougars for the first time and the staff was ready to have them back.

“I heard a lot about them. I talked with a lot of people about them and their personalities and how they’re doing. I feel like I knew them already but it was super exciting to see them get back,” said Dr. Lakes.

Jack and Diane were transported from Baton Rouge to Alexandria on Wednesday. Alexandria Zoo’s Staff Veterinarian Rebekah Riedel says there are plenty of safety precautions taken when moving animals but they made sure they were safe and comfortable the entire time.

“We open the crate and just wait. Everything is secured and they are in a safe spot in the crate and den. That’s when we let them decide to move on their own,” said Riedel.

Their new exhibit features an outdoor habitat, a bigger night house and a tunnel to play in. Dr. Lakes said they’ve received so much support since the hurricanes and that they couldn’t build the additional expanded habitat without the community support.

The Alexandria Zoo is open from Wednesday to Sunday every week from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. with the last admission being at 3:30 p.m.

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