Baby jaguar Balam makes his debut appearance at the Ellen Trout Zoo

Baby jaguar Balam makes his debut appearance at the Ellen Trout Zoo


There was plenty to swoon over at the Ellen Trout Zoo Saturday as baby Balam made his debut to the East Texas public.

"He's so cute," exclaimed spectator Jennifer Morgan.

"Oh my gosh, he's so precious," said spectator Vickie Evans. "He's just a little baby, an innocent creature."

People came out in large numbers, all of them equally excited to see the newest addition to the zoo, especially the kids.

"The kids actually heard about the baby jaguar at school, so they've been really excited to come out and see him," Morgan said. "They were asking if they could pet him or hold him and I was like no I don't think so!"

Even though visitors were only allowed to look, not touch, his handlers were more than happy to show Balam off and answered each question asked by some very curious kiddos.

"My grandkids were asking why he wobbles and how does he eat and why is he camouflaged," Evans said.

Some of the kids made some very good observations about Balam.

 "He got to walk around, he keeps going in the corner and he likes to go in the water," said spectator Sydney Uechironan.

Other kids learned a lot of valuable information today as well.

"I learned how to tell the difference between a leopard and a jaguar," explained spectator Taylor Boyett. "The jaguar spot is a circle with a dot in the middle and the leopard sport does not have the dot."

It appeared as though not one East Texan walked away disappointed and were so glad such a special creature calls their hometown zoo home.

"It's just so incredible," Evans said. "I love that our kids are be able to see nature at work and be able to come and enjoy this wonderful zoo."

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