Great Cats World Park
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Great Cats World Park

Great Cats World Park is a big cat zoo. It is located a few miles south of Cave Junction, Oregon, United States. It is owned and managed by Craig Wagner. He and a select few staff members involve themselves personally in the raising of the cats: feeding them, training them and sometimes sleeping with them as babies. Its mission is to educate the public about all types of wild cat species to increase conservation and awareness. The park's breeding projects involve the Amur leopard, a highly endangered cat that will most likely be extinct from the wild in the near future, and the white tiger, a cat whose genetic diversity is highly threatened by only a captive gene pool.


Great Cats World Park was built from the ground up on a 10-acre lot bordering the historic Redwood Highway. The land was purchased in 2003, and the facility opened to the public in 2005. The site was chosen based on the relatively mild climate, natural surroundings and available tourist traffic. Though long-time veterans of public exhibition, before this the cats home base was never open to the public. Craig Wagner first began raising big cats at the age of 23 in Minnesota after he accidentally met a cougar cub while returning home from a fishing trip. After a bit of soul searching and a lot of research, he realized he had found his passion.[1] For more than 30 years, Wagner has been working with rare and exotic cats and promoting them via film, photography and live shows, and he is federally licensed to own and show big cats.


A white tiger and its handler at Great Cats World Park.

As of 2014, Great Cats World Park is home to 44 cats, of 17 different species, including cougars, leopards, jaguars, African lions, Siberian tigers, a fishing cat, and an ocelot.[2][3]

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service probation

A serval at Great Cats World Park.

In September 2007, Great Cats World Park was sentenced by a federal court to one month probation for violation of the Endangered Species Act and fined $10,000. Owner Craig Wagner pleaded guilty in June 2007 to purchasing the park's ocelot for $3,000. There is a near-total ban on ocelot sales in order to discourage the commercialization of the rare animals.[4] The ocelot was purchased from the Isis Society for Inspirational Studies, who were given two years probation and fined $60,000. The ocelot will continue to live at Great Parks World Park. According to Phil Land, the resident U.S. Fish and Wildlife agent in charge, "Sometimes it's actually better to leave them with the people that care for them. Then we don't have to try to find a place for them."[5]

See also


  1. ^ John, Givot (August 23, 2007). "Big cats go wild at the Great Cats show at Wildlife Safari this weekend". The News-Review. Retrieved . 
  2. ^ "Some folks are cat people". Illinois Valley News. Archived from the original on 2007-08-10. Retrieved . 
  3. ^ "Great Cats World Park". Archived from the original on 2014-11-18.  Information from official Great Cats World Park website
  4. ^ Grube, Nicholas (September 19, 2007). "Officials pounce on Ore. attraction". The Daily Triplicate. Archived from the original on May 30, 2007. Retrieved . 
  5. ^ Grube, Nicholas (September 21, 2007). "Cat park remains open despite illegal activity". The Daily Triplicate. Retrieved . [dead link]

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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