CAPE MAY — Officials at the Cape May County Zoo are monitoring the two remaining snow leopards after one of the cubs suddenly died this week.

According to a Facebook post from the zoo, the 4-month-old cub named Zara died on Monday just a few days after she fell ill. The zoo said the cub's death came "despite medical intervention and treatments," and that Zara's condition continued to worsen through the weekend. She was taken to Northstar Veterinary Hospital on Monday for a "neurological consult and an MRI before she died."

The zoo said the MRI and Zara's other symptoms suggest she had "severe infectious encephalitis," and that "results are still pending that will identify the exact infectious agent."

Following Zara's death, the zoo said they are keeping an extra-close eye on her sister Ahana and their mother, Tysa, to ensure they did not contract the infection.

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Contact reporter Adam Hochron at 609-359-5326 or

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