At the Thomas Belt Zoo in Juigalpa, Nicaragua, a very rare white Cougar was born in captivity. According to facility veterinarian Carlos Molina, it would be one of only four similar specimens in the world. Molina said it is still too early to evaluate the animal even considering that albino Cougar require a lot of care and are particularly vulnerable to sunlight.
Once the cubs reach three months of age, the zoo plans to expose them to crowds.
About the puma
Cougar was formerly widespread throughout North and South America. No other mammal on the continent was as widespread; it extended from southern Canada through Central America to southern Patagonia.
Nowadays its diffusion is strongly limited and reduced to uninhabited or sparsely populated areas by man. In the United States, Cougar have survived the waves of extermination only in the Rocky Mountains, in the deserts and semi-deserts of the Southwest and in the swampy regions of the Everglades in Florida.
Through protectionist measures, its territory has again extended, and in some western regions of the United States the pumas no longer even avoid the neighborhoods of the cities. After being hunted nearly to extinction in the United States, the puma has made a sizable reemergence, with an estimated 30,000 individuals in the western United States.
In Canada, pumas are found west of the prairies, in Alberta, British Columbia, and the southern Yukon. The highest concentration of Cougar in North America is found on Vancouver Island in British Columbia. Cougars are gradually extending their range eastward, following streams and riverbeds, and have reached Missouri, Michigan and traversed Kansas, including the greater Kansas City metropolitan area.
There continue to be reports of the survival of the remnant eastern cougar population in New Brunswick, Ontario, and the Gaspé Peninsula of Quebec. Due to the urbanization of rural areas, Cougar often come into contact with people, especially in areas with large populations of deer, their natural prey.
They have also begun to hunt domesticated animals such as dogs, cats, and livestock, but have rarely relied on humans as a food source.