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Two Coati Pups Surprise Zoo Budapest


An elderly South American Coati unexpectedly gave birth to two healthy pups at Zoo Budapest. In the wild, Coatis rarely live longer than seven to eight years, but they have been known to live up to 17 years in captivity. The mother of these two pups, Juliet, is 15 years old. The Zoo's press release notes that "it is almost a matter of biological peculiarity" that she has successfully given birth to two healthy pups at her advanced age. At four years old, the pups' sire has only been sexually mature for about half a year, making the parents quite the unlikely pair!

Zoo staff were concerned that the elderly mother would not be able to raise both pups on her own, so one pup is staying with mom while the other is being hand-raised by human caregivers. As an adult, the hand-raised pup will be used for educational programs at the zoo. The pups are now about three weeks old.



Photo credits: Zoo Budapest

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South American Coatis, native to Central and South America, are a member of the raccoon family. They eat a variety of insects and small vertebrates as well as fruits and berries. They tend to be active during the day and sleep at night curled up in trees with their noses tucked to their bellies. Despite the ever-present threat of deforestation, these tree-dwelling mammals are very common and ranked as a species of Least Concern on the International Union for Conservation of Nature's Red List of Threatened Species. After a gestation period of 44 days, females will generally give birth to up to four pups.