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Jaguars Temporarily Off Exhibit

Categories: Animals, Visitor Services
Jaguars Sasha and Tikal
Jaguars Sasha (left) and Tikal (right)

The Sacramento Zoo is excited to announce that the resident jaguar pair, Sasha and Tikal, will be receiving an exhibit renovation and additions to their living space!

The renovations, which are currently underway, will take place in phases over the coming weeks and months. The improvements will include necessary structure upgrades including a roof replacement, tree removal and trimming, various horticulture upgrades, a long-awaited repair of the river, water system and fountain and more.

As a conservation organization, the zoo has plans to repurpose large trees removed from the exhibit. We are hoping to upcycle trees and other material into playing, climbing and lounging structures for the jaguars and other animals within the zoo.

Other potential improvements are being explored throughout the duration of this project. Phases of work are expected to be done this spring and summer with the animals off exhibit during active work.

Once completed, visitors can look forward to a much-improved visual experience. The overgrown foliage will be thinned to provide better viewing and connection with the jaguars in their habitat.

“We are very happy to continue our commitment to improving animal habitats and guest experiences throughout the zoo. These improvements are only possible with the incredible support we have from the community,” says Director of Animal Care Matt McKim.


  • As the project progresses, there will be periods when guests will not be able to see the jaguars at all
  • The jaguar exhibit and Rare Feline Courtyard are currently closed
  • Tree work inside the exhibit may impact visitor traffic in the surrounding area at times
  • There will be well-marked construction areas throughout the duration of the project
  • Project timelines are tentative and aim to balance existing zoo projects and upgrades

Please stay tuned and visit the zoo often for updates on the phased renovation to the jaguar exhibit and to enjoy more than 450 other amazing animals that call the Sacramento Zoo home.

The Sacramento Zoo participates in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums Jaguar Species Survival Plan® (SSP). Jaguars are an endangered species with estimates indicating that only approximately 15,000 still exist in the wild; however, their numbers are rapidly decreasing as a result of habitat destruction and illegal fur trade. In appearance, jaguars are often confused with leopards – both cats have a similar brownish/yellow base-fur coloring that is marked distinctively with spots – the jaguar’s spots are rosettes, which are spots within spots, making them slightly different. Jaguars are also stockier and have larger heads and shorter tails than leopards. They weigh 80-130 pounds and can live approximately 11 years in the wild and up to 22 years in human care.