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Jun 12

Sunset Zoo Says Goodbye to Asian Small-Clawed Otter

Posted on June 12, 2018 at 11:19 AM by Kristen Isch

February 15, 2018 – Sunset Zoo is saddened to announce the sudden loss of longtime resident, Bagus, due to age related medical complications. He was 15 years old. The median life expectancy for Asian small-clawed otters in human care is anywhere between 10-15 years.
“Bagus will be missed by his keepers, staff, and guests alike. He lived a long life and we have enjoyed our time with him immensely. We are mourning his loss and thank the community for their thoughts and condolences during this time,” said Scott Shoemaker, Zoo Director.
Bagus’s charismatic and adventurous nature made him a guest favorite. He charmed everyone during his enrichment sessions with his keeper team. Bagus came to the Little Apple in 2007 when he was 4 years old.
Veterinary care for the Zoo’s 200 residents is provided by the Veterinary Health Center at Kansas State University with Dr. James Carpenter serving as lead Veterinarian. Sunset Zoo is thankful for the exemplary care they provided Bagus through is life and all the work they do with all of the Sunset Zoo animals.
Sunset Zoo encourages guests to post their photos of Bagus or leave messages of support for its staff on the Zoo’s social media pages. All messages and memories will be passed along to his keeper team.
Bagus and his female counterpart, Abigail, shared an exhibit on the Asian Trial, near the red pandas. Guests are still able to visit Abigail at the Otter Exhibit. Sunset Zoo is proud to have been able to provide Bagus with a long and happy life that exceeds general expectancy. While we were hopeful that Bagus would remain with us for years to come, general preparations for the next stage in our investment in the Asian small-clawed otter program have been discussed. We are dedicated to the advancement of this species and are optimistic that we will be able to acquire a partner for Abigail soon and that a breeding recommendation may follow, advancing this special species at Sunset Zoo.  
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For more information about Sunset Zoo, visit or call 785.587.APES. Sunset Zoo is located at 2333 Oak Street near the Manhattan High School West Campus. Home to over 200 animals and accredited by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums, the Zoo is committed to inspiring the conservation of our natural world.