BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (WTNH) — Rochan, the beloved red panda at Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo, passed away last week.
The Beardsley Zoo announced the news on Friday, noting that the tough decision was made to humanely euthanize the 7-year-old red panda panda on February 17. Rochan was suffering from a health condition, affecting his ability to walk. An MRI was completed, which showed Rochan’s increasing difficulty due to lesions on his spine, the Zoo said.
Rochan was a loved member of the Zoo family since his arrival in 2015. The zoo said its webcam, featuring Rochan and his companion Berry, was always popular among guests.
“Ro will be deeply missed by all of us here at Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo,” Zoo Director Gregg Dancho said in a statement. “He had a unique personality and related well both to his companion, Berry, and to his animal care staff. It has been our privilege to have known him for six years.
Rochan and Berry were a part of the Species Survival Program, designed to preserve the long-term sustainability of captive-based animal populations. The Zoo plans to work with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums to find a new companion for Berry.
The Zoo is celebrating its 100th year in 2022.