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Kansas City Zoo & Aquarium mourns loss of Tamale, an 11-year-old sea lion

Posted at 2:45 PM, Feb 27, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City Zoo & Aquarium is mourning the loss of its 11-year-old sea lion, Tamale, who died over the weekend.

Tamale was recently treated for leptospirosi, and the zoo said she likely died from the bacterial infection.

Leptospirosi is the leading infectious condition in wild sea lions, with two-thirds not surviving the illness.

Tamale resided at the zoo since 2014 but was born at SeaWorld Orlando in 2012.

The sea lion is being remembered by her animal care specialists as smart, athletic and strong, with the ability to jump high and swim fast while looking elegant.

"They will fondly remember her sunbathing in the pool and enjoying ice and Jell-O treats," the zoo said in a statement. "Tamale will be dearly missed by her Zoo family, including staff, volunteers, and guests."