ASHEBORO, NC – North Carolina Zoo Director Pat Simmons announced the birth of two ocelot kittens at Zoo to Do, the zoo’s annual fundraising gala, held Saturday, Sept. 24. “These two new kittens bring the total of endangered ocelots in captivity to 96,” Simmons says. “It’s always exciting when animal babies are born at the zoo, and we hope to have the kittens on exhibit with their mother in about six to eight weeks for our visitors to enjoy.”

The kittens were born to 11-year-old Inca and 12-year-old Diego and are the fourth litter for the pair. The ocelot parents came to the North Carolina Zoo in 2010 from San Francisco. Inca, the mother, is outgoing while Diego is very shy.

Ocelot gestation period is roughly 80 days with one to three young being born in each litter. Newborns are 7-12 ounces at birth and their eyes will open about two weeks after birth.

Ocelots are rare in the United States and are found only in Arizona and Texas. They are more commonly and widely found in Central and South America, inhabiting arid scrublands and tropical forests.                                                                                      

About the North Carolina Zoo

The North Carolina Zoo provides an experience like no other zoo anywhere. With five miles of exhibits, nearly 2,000 animals and 52,000 plants it is the largest natural habitat zoo in the world and an international leader in wildlife conservation.

Find yourself surrounded by some of Africa’s giants including elephants, rhinos, and giraffes; share the love of gorillas with Mosuba and his six-member troop; polar bears Nikita and Anana take polar plunges every day at the Rocky Coast Exhibit; or join in the fun at the mud café in the Kidzone.

Located in center of the state in Asheboro, it is convenient to visit from anywhere in North Carolina. The North Carolina Zoo welcomes nearly 750,000 guests each year. Plan your adventure at



About the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources 

The North Carolina Zoo is an agency of the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. The N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (NCDNCR) is the state agency with a vision to be the leader in using the state’s natural and cultural resources to build the social, cultural, educational and economic future of North Carolina. Led by Secretary Susan Kluttz, NCDNCR's mission is to improve the quality of life in our state by creating opportunities to experience excellence in the arts, history, libraries and nature in North Carolina by stimulating learning, inspiring creativity, preserving the state’s history, conserving the state’s natural heritage, encouraging recreation and cultural tourism, and promoting economic development.

NCDNCR includes 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, two science museums, three aquariums and Jennette’s Pier, 39 state parks and recreation areas, the N.C.  Zoo, the nation's first state-supported Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the State Archives, the N.C. Arts Council, State Preservation Office and the Office of State Archaeology, along with the Division of Land and Water Stewardship. For more information, please call (919) 807-7300 or visit