Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo mourns the death of zoo’s first mayor Wiggles the Chinchilla

Animals and Wildlife

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (WTNH)– The Connecticut Beardsley Zoo in Bridgeport is mourning the loss of the zoo’s first mayor, Wiggles the Chinchilla.

Wiggles was elected as the first Mayor of Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo back in November 2020 and served a brief tenure that sadly came to an end when he died on Sunday, Jan. 3.

RELATED: Wiggles the Chinchilla voted mayor of Beardsley Zoo in Bridgeport, all for a good cause

Wiggles the Chinchilla (Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo)

According to zoo officials, the chinchilla passed away from advanced age with his campaign and animal care staff by his side.

The 19-year-old mayor was a longtime ambassador and veteran of ZooMobile where he visited senior centers and attended children’s birthday parties.

Wiggles the Chinchilla (Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo)

Education Curator Jim Knox released the following statement on Wiggles’ death:

“Although Wiggles did not serve long as the Zoo’s mayor, he served as an educator for the Zoo for nearly two decades. His role was to engage children and adults alike in recognizing the need to understand animals of all species, to highlight the delicate balance between living things and their environment, and to foster curiosity. Wiggles was the consummate animal ambassador and a beloved member of the Zoo family. We feel his loss deeply.”

Education Curator Jim Knox

Bridgeport Mayor Ganim also provided the following statement upon hearing about the passing of Mayor Wiggles:

“We are all deeply saddened by the news of Mayor Wiggles passing at Beardsley Zoo.  Wiggles was truly a delight to all that met him, especially beloved by children who were also able to experience his educational and social calls to classrooms.   While we know that Mayor Wiggles can never be replaced, we look forward to paying a visit to current and new members of the Beardsley Zoo family in the near future.”

Mayor Ganim

Amur leopard, Kallisto, who was the second place winner, will now step into the role of mayor and fulfill Wiggles’ duties through the duration of his 12-month term.

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