Anteater

Giant Anteater Is Latest Arrival at Howletts

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Riding on mom’s back, a baby Giant Anteater is the latest arrival at the United Kingdom’s Howletts Wild Animal Park.

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Baby giant anteater at Howletts Wild Animal Park c Dave Rolfe
Photo Credit:  Dave Rolfe

 

Joel Bunce, head of the zoo’s hoofstock section, said: “We were delighted with this latest arrival. It’s been a long time since we had a Giant Anteater birth and this little one is getting on really well.”

The baby was born to female Fidgi and male Zet. According to zoo keepers, both are providing excellent care to their newborn.

Giant Anteaters are native to South America and females normally give birth to one baby at a time, after a gestation period of 190 days. Young are carried on their mother’s back and they may stay with their mothers for up to two years. Giant Anteaters are listed as Vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Though their range extends from Honduras to Argentina, they are extirpated (regionally extinct) in some countries due to overhunting and habitat loss. 


Giant Anteater Born at Zoo Berlin

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Zoo Berlin welcomed a baby Giant Anteater on May 26. The baby, named Evita by her keepers, is a female. The name was chosen because "E" is the fifth letter in the alphabet, and this is mom Griseline's fifth surviving baby. Before Evita there were Adolpho, Benita, Carlos, and Danita, all born at Berlin Zoo. Evita is being hand-fed by keepers and receives three additional bottle meals per day.

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Evita was just 1,570 grams, or 3.5 pounds, when she was born, but has now increased her weight to 2.5 kg, or 5.5 pounds. She's strong enough to ride on her mother's back — a behavior that is common in Giant Anteaters. Keepers, however, must keep a close eye on Evita since her coloration makes it difficult to distinguish her from her mother's fur.

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Giant Anteaters are insectivores native to South America. As the name implies, their diets consist of ants as well as other small insects. They use their strong claws to tear open termite mounds and anthills. Since Giant Anteaters have no teeth, their two-foot-long tongues and sticky saliva help them to extract the insects.

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Photo Credit Zoo Berlin


Rare Southern Tamandua Born at Buffalo Zoo

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A group of Southern Tamanduas was imported to the United States last August as part of an effort to bolster the population in US zoos.  A pair named Olive and Brutus were placed at the Buffalo Zoo.

Not much is known about the reproductive behaviors of this species, but Olive and Brutus had their first pup on April 7.  The male baby, named Otis, is strong, alert and very vocal.  

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Photo Credit:  Kelly Brown

Zoo keepers report that Olive is a very attentive mother and though she is protective of her baby, she is calm around her keepers.  Every morning, the baby can be seen clinging onto his mom’s back as she makes her way down to the feeding pans for her breakfast. He has no problem letting mom know when she is not by his side!

Southern Tamanduas are native to much of South America, but they are becoming rare.  These ant- and termite-eating mammals are expert diggers, and are able to extract insects with their long tongues.

 


Meet Warsaw Zoo's Baby Giant Anteater!

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Poland’s Warsaw Zoo is celebrating the birth of a baby Giant Anteater.  The male baby was born on January 18, and is the fourth baby for the zoo’s breeding pair. 

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Photo credits:  Warsaw Zoo

Female Giant Anteaters normally give birth to a single pup, which is born with its eyes closed.   A pup rides on its mother’s back for several months.  This offers not only free transportation for the pup, but excellent camouflage as well:  the pup’s black and tan color bands line up perfectly with those of the mother, making the pup nearly invisible against mom's shaggy coat.  By the time the pup is about ten months old, it is completely independent.

Native to much of South America, Giant Anteaters exploit a variety of habitats, from grasslands to rain forests.  They are listed as Vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of nature (IUCN), but they have been extirpated from parts of Uruguay, Belize, Costa Rica, and Guatemala.  In the last decade, the population of wild Giant Anteaters has declined by about 30%.


Chester Zoo's New Baby Anteater Hitches a Ride

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A rare baby Giant Anteater was born at Chester Zoo on December 23. The tiny baby, whose gender is not yet known, is only the second of the species to ever be born at the zoo. The baby will cling to its mother’s back for approximately six months until it is ready to walk, explore and find food on its own. Parents Pedro and Bliss, both aged three, arrived in 2010 as part of an international breeding program.

Team Manager David White said, “Bliss is a very good mum and is so far doing an excellent job of looking after her new arrival. She’s obviously very proud of her newborn and has, every now and again, been parading around and showing off to our visitors. Seeing the youngster clinging tightly to her tail is quite the sight!”

Giant Anteaters are classed as Vulnerable to extinction by conservationists, so the birth is good news for the unusual looking species. Native to Central and South America, the animals do not have teeth but have tongues which can measure up to almost 24 inches (over half a meter) long!

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Photo Credit: Chester Zoo

Find Giant Anteater facts just after the fold:

Continue reading "Chester Zoo's New Baby Anteater Hitches a Ride" »


How does a Giant Anteater pup yawn? Like this!

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Early in the morning on September 27, female Giant Anteater Zoe delivered a healthy baby at the Reid Park Zoo.  After allowing the first-time mom and her new baby to spend some quiet time together, the two are now delighting crowds while they are on exhibit every afternoon.

A naming contest among zoo fans resulted in the winning name of Zola for the female baby. Her father’s name is Xander.

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Baby Giant Anteaters, called pups, are carried on their mothers’ backs for the first several months of life.  They become independent at around 10 months.

Giant Anteaters are native to South America, where they live in a variety of habitats from grasslands to rain forests.  After breaking open ant and termite mounds with their huge, curved claws, they collect the insects with their long, sticky tongues. 

In parts of their South American range, Giant Anteaters are abundant, while in other areas they have been completely eradicated.  Because of these regional extirpations, Giant Anteaters are listed as Vulnerable by the IUCN. 

Photo Credit:  Reid Park Zoo


Watch Out for That Tongue! Baby Anteater Debuts at St. Louis Zoo

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Who's that draped across her mother’s back? Blending in with the stripes and long hair is Sabia (pronounced sah-BEE-ya), a baby Giant Anteater born at the Saint Louis Zoo on August 14. She just made her public debut with Mom in early November.

With a long snout and black-and-white stripes, she’s a miniature version of her parents – mother Wendy, age 15, born at Phoenix Zoo and father Willie, age 11, born at Oklahoma City Zoo. This is the second baby for the parents, whose first was born in 2005. She weighed just 3 pounds (453 grams) at birth but is growing nicely, nursing from mom as she will for a total of 6 months. In the video below you get a look at her very long tongue, which she will use once she begins to eat.... ants!The tongue of an anteater will extend up to two feet to capture their prey.

Giant Anteaters are in danger of extinction in the wild. They've disappeared from most of their historic range in Central America -- victims of habitat loss. In South America, these animals are often hunted as trophies or captured by animal dealers.

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Photo Credit: Rachael Macy/St. Louis Zoo 

Adult Giant Anteaters are the largest of the four Anteater species and can grow up to be 50 inches long, adding 25 to 35 inches of fan-like tail. After a pregnancy of six months, anteaters give birth to a single baby who will stay with the mother until it reaches maturity - for up to two years. The newborn must learn to crawl up on the mother’s back to rest while mom looks for food. Adult giant anteaters will eat up to 30,000 ants in one day. 

 

Meet Delilah - The Giant Anteater Pup!

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Meet the newest addition to the Palm Beach Zoo's family! Delilah was born about 6 weeks ago and weights just over 6lbs. She was born to proud giant Anteater parents, Cruz & Odelia. The Palm Beach Zoo currently holds the second largest collection of Giant Anteaters in Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA)-accredited facilities. Delilah will not be available for public view for a few more months - stay tuned for updates on her progress.

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Odelia takes a break from baby...

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Photo credit: Palm Beach Zoo


My, what a long snout you have! Giant Anteater born at Nashville Zoo

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The largest Giant Anteater group in the United States, located at the Nashville Zoo, just got a little bigger with the birth of a male baby on September 19. The pup brings the total number of Giant Anteaters at the zoo to 12.

Once found throughout the northern two-thirds of South America and much of Central America, Giant Anteaters are believed to be extinct in portions of Belize, Costa Rica, Guatemala and Uruguay.  They remain Vulnerable to extinction in the rest of their range.  “Nashville Zoo is a leader in conservation efforts to save Giant Anteaters from extinction,” said Connie Philipp, mammal curator at the Zoo.

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This is the third birth for mother Emilia, a wild-caught Anteater from Paraguay. Baby Anteaters typically cling to their mothers’ backs for several months, gradually becoming more independent.

Giant Anteaters' unique tubular rostrums and 24-inch-long tongues are specially designed for slurping up ants and termites.  Insect nests are torn open with sturdy, curved claws and up to 300,000 insects are gobbled up in a single day!

Photo Credit:  Aimee Stubbs


Tamandua Baby Body Slams His Teddy Bear Buddy

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No, Quito the baby Lesser Anteater (Tamandua) isn't training for Wrestlemania, he's actually just gripping his stuffed bear for stability while Reid Park Zoo vets give him a routine check up. The rest of the time, Quito attaches firmly to mom Lety. Born August 30, little Quito is the newest of 51 Southern Tamanduas in captivity across 27 Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) institutions.

Tamandua are a species of Anteater native to much of South America. It has been reported that Amazonian Indians keep them in their homes for Ant and Termite control! While their diet is the same as their relative the Giant Anteater, Tamandua are able to search for their food high in the trees, so there are plenty of Ants and Termites to go around.

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Photo credit: Reid Park Zoo