PORTLAND — The Oregon Zoo named Peggy the caracal its 2012 Mother of the Year Friday, zoo officials said.
She gave birth to three kittens last June and two of the three young caracals have recently moved to new homes, according to the Oregon Zoo's Hova Najarian.
“We are very proud of Peggy,” senior Africa keeper Asaba Mukobi said. “She was very protective, made sure everyone got enough to eat, and set boundaries for them once they started moving around.”
Keepers named the kittens them Mkuze, Binti and Aziza.
"Mkuze, the male kitten, is named after an African wildlife reserve," Najarian said. "The female kittens’ names are Swahili; Binti means “young lady daughter” and Aziza means “gorgeous.”
In March, Binti moved to the Little Rock Zoo in Arkansas, and Aziza moved to the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans. Mkuze was still in Portland, but keepers expected to transfer him soon.