Interesting facts about Yazhi
Yazhi was born in Italy and arrived in the UK along with her brother who was to live in a private collection, however Yazhi didn't have a home. She was taken in by our sister park Paradise Wildlife Park where she spent the first year of her life.
When Puma cubs are born they have mottled markings and spots, these disappear as they approach adolescence. Adult Pumas are entirely one colour, as referenced in their name ‘Puma Concolor’ which is Latin for ‘of the same colour’.
Pumas have more names than any other wild cat, the most common alternative names include Mountain Lion, Cougar, Catamount or even Panther.
Pumas can vary drastically in weight - anything from 35kg to 80kg for the larger males. They are long and muscular usually between 1.5-2metres in length. Pumas can run up to 80 km/h (50 mph) and jump as high as 4.6 meters (15 feet).
Pumas use whistles, screams, squeaks and purrs to communicate, they are the largest of the small cat species and are not classified as a big cat in spite of their size and strength because they don't have the ability to roar. They use many vocalisations including chirruping and purring.
Yazhi has a particularly playful nature, she loves enrichment of all types, but her most favourite toy is a basketball. She adores them!
Cat Care Gifts for Yahzi
Yazhi arrived at The Big Cat Sanctuary in 2011 having spent a few months at Paradise Wildlife Park. She was named after the Native American word meaning ‘little one’ and came to us after being hand reared at Paradise, Yazhi arrived in the UK with her brother from Italy, but needed a new home.
The Sanctuary were over the moon to have Yazhi, she is a real personality and quite possibly the most playful adult cat there. She loves to play and she’s often heard purring away with contentment. Base balls are her absolute favourite thing, she bounces it around her enclosure, chasing it and leaping around! This is excellent exercise and stimulation for Yazhi and it’s great to see.
There is another side to Yazhi, she is extremely possessive of her food, meal times are strictly a private affair for Yazhi and hand feeds are off the agenda as this type of activity doesn’t bring out the best in this otherwise happy, gentle girl.
She enjoys her food hidden away, very similarly to how this species would in the wild. Once she has eaten, her gentle nature returns and she will be seen resting with a big full tummy and is happy to see people.
She is also very fond of a new bed, little will entice her out of her den if she has a big strawy bed inside during the colder months. During summer her favourite pastime is sunbathing on her platforms in the sunshine, she is a true sun worshipper!
Pumas have the largest range of any cat (from Canada to South America) and have the most different common names (often called cougar, panther, mountain lion, catamount etc.).
They are found in two colour phases; yellow/tawny shades of buff and cinnamon, or grey shades of silver, slate and blue. They have developed adaptations for life in the mountains including a long tail for balance, large feet for balance and weight distributions, relatively small rounded ears to prevent heat loss, and longer hind legs for agile, jumping climbing and balance. Hairs between the pads of their feet enable them to hunt and stalk relatively silently.
Over their range larger animals are found towards the far northern and southern extremes and smaller animals are equatorial. They have exceptionally powerful muscles capable of taking down very large prey; adult males are easily capable of taking adult horses.
Puma vocalise using a range of different hisses, yowls, chirrups and mews. They also frequently “scream”, the reason for this is suspected to be to attract suitable mates for breeding.
The Puma is listed as a species of “Least Concern” by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species.
Adult Puma are solitary except when mating/rearing kittens. Offspring are mainly born year-round after a gestation period of 90 – 96 days. However puma become more seasonal breeders the further north (most kittens being born April – September) and south (birth peak from February – June) in their ranges. Average litter sizes are 1 -6 blind, helpless and spotted kittens. Kittens grow quickly, open their eyes at approximately 7 days, start to eat meat at approximately 6-8 weeks, are fully weaned at 12 weeks but may continue to suckle for as long as the mother allows. The spots start to fade at approximately 6 months, when juveniles start making their own kills.
Dispersing age is approximately 12-18 months at sexual maturity however puma will not start breeding until they have established their own territories; males usually at 3 years and females at 2.5 years.