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City of Little Rock Public Relations
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Contact(s):Susan Altrui

Friday, April 17, 2009

Statement on the Death of the Zoo’s Lemur Baby

LITTLE ROCK, AR (April 17, 2009) -- We are sad to report that Houdini, our baby lemur, passed away last night. The Zoo is grateful for the outpouring of support and prayers from the public and appreciates the wonderful comments we’ve received from around the world about our staff’s heroic rescue of the animal Wednesday afternoon.

Houdini fell in the moat Wednesday prompting the Powell family to notify Zoo staff of the situation. Primate Keeper Karen Caster and Curator Joe Darcangelo responded immediately. After Caster pulled the baby from the water Darcangelo performed mouth-to-mouth on the baby that weighed less than a pound. Houdini was then taken to the Zoo’s veterinarian hospital where he was stabilized and appeared to be doing fine. Houdini was placed back with his mother in an off-exhibit location for observation.

Jeff Powell videotaped the dramatic rescue and made the tape available on where word quickly spread drawing national attention to the event.

While the cause of death is still unknown, it is not uncommon for an animal to pass away after nearly drowning. Houdini’s parents, Pepper and Todd, are doing fine and the lemurs at the Little Rock Zoo will continue to be on exhibit.


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