Life Cycle

Females breed when they turn 3 years old, and usually have 1-2 kittens per litter. She arranges her den so that it will be ready to use when the kittens are born after a 70-90 day gestation period. The dens are usually in rock crevices, or thorny, dense, and low areas. Mothers take care of their 1-3 kittens in the day, but leave them to hunt for the family during the night.When the kittens turn three months old, they learn to hunt for prey with their mother in order to survive later when by themselves. Kittens still rely on their mother until they are ready to leave, which is when around 1 year old. After half a year more, they are an official adult. Ocelots must find their own untouched territory, or fight another ocelot for one. These cats are very solitary, but can share territory with the mate. They mark their land with urine, and the males have to defend it.Ocelots live a short 7-10 years in the wild, but in captivity can last up to 20 years!