One of the longest-living animal residents at the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery Zoo has died.
Rajeev the Burmese python lived at the museum since 1991 and was popular with visitors.
“Rajeev was a favorite for many visitors ranging from toddlers to seniors, and he will be missed,” Stephanie Hyklinski, the curator of live animals, said.
Rajeev, a member of one of the largest snake species in the world, was 28 years old. The average lifespan for pythons under human care is 20-25 years and 15 years in the wild. He weighed 155 pounds and was almost 16-feet long.
The python was named after Dr. Rajeev Venkayya, who today is the President of Global Vaccine Business Unit at Takeda Pharmaceuticals. As a Fairborn High School student, Dr. Venkayya worked at the museum and helped care for the animals.
“Rajeev’s latest bout of illness took a lot out of him and he was unable to eat at all,” Hyklinski said. “His condition, which consisted primarily of long-term lack of appetite and weight loss brought on by old age, was simply too much for him, and his quality of life was starting to decline.”
“ After much deliberation with our veterinarians, and multiple efforts to treat him, the decision was made to euthanize him humanely. Pet owners will know that euthanizing a geriatric animal is not an easy decision to make, but our animal care staff felt that his condition would not improve.”
Thank you for reading the Dayton Daily News and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to exclusive deals and newsletters.
Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Dayton Daily News. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.