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While cheetahs are not currently seen at Naples Zoo, staff is working on options to return these iconic species to the Zoo.

Farewell, Steelman and Ngoma
When these cheetahs arrived in 2012, they were both already about double the lifespan of their cousins in the wild. Even so, digestive issues, a form of dementia, and finally failing kidneys took their toll on the male named Steelman. He passed away on December 18, 2014 surrounded by the tearful keepers and veterinarian who had provided such wonderful care in his final years. He was just a few days shy of his sixteenth birthday and one of the oldest cheetahs in the country. Because of declining health issues, our female, Ngoma, passed away less than a year later on September 18, 2015.

With a limited number of cheetahs in the nation, there were many choices for where these geriatric cats could live. Southwest Florida can be proud the Species Survival Plan® selected our nationally accredited facility for their care. Long known for husbandry expertise with felids, our staff was grateful for the opportunity to provide care for these aging cats that allowed them to live to be some of the oldest in the country.

To help cheetahs in the wild, the Naples Zoo Conservation Fund continues to support cheetah conservation through the African People and Wildlife Fund.


A cheetah in the Maasai Mara
in Kenya. Photographed by Larry W. Richardson on a Naples Zoo safari
hosted by Tauck and AAA Travel.

Cheetah Donors
Dr. Craig and Mrs. Kathy Fenton, Ms. Jeanne Guglielmi, Mr. Jonathan and Mrs. Nancy Hamill, Mr. John and Mrs. Paulette Kempfer, Mr. Don and Mrs. Connie Malenick, The Martin Foundation, Mr. John and Mrs. Connie Miller, Mrs. Linda H. and Mr. Robert Ottenad, Mr. Benton and Mrs. Joan Tolley, and Mrs. Linda Wheeler.



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