Franklin Park Zoo

Six Foot Baby Born at Franklin Park Zoo

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The staff at Franklin Park Zoo, in New England, is pleased to announce the birth of a female Masai Giraffe Calf!

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FranklinPark_GiraffeBaby_4Photo Credits: Amanda Giardina/Zoo New England (1,2,3,4,5); Sarah Woodruff (6,7,8,9,10,11)

After a labor and delivery that lasted about an hour, mother, ‘Jana’, gave birth to the female giraffe calf, on October 2nd, inside the Giraffe Barn. Within 40 minutes of birth, the calf was standing, and she was observed nursing about an hour and a half after birth.

The female calf had her first examination, the following day, by the Zoo’s veterinary staff. She weighed 160 pounds and stood at 6-feet tall.

The calf’s parents, ‘Beau’ and ‘Jana’, are very genetically valuable within the North American captive Masai Giraffe population. Since 2006, Beau and Jana have had five successful births, including the new calf. The pair are also grandparents as well, with offspring at zoos up and down the eastern United States.

“We are so thrilled to share the news of this exciting birth,” said John Linehan, Zoo New England President and CEO. “Jana is an experienced mother and she is doing everything a mother giraffe should do. As with any new birth, we are continuing to monitor the mother and baby closely.”

Giraffes are more temperature sensitive than other savannah animals, and are kept indoors when temperatures drop below 65 degrees Fahrenheit.  However, on October 8th, the new calf was able to enjoy a beautiful Boston day and explore the outdoor area with her mother!

Beau and Jana were bred as part of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA) Giraffe Species Survival Plan (SSP), which is a cooperative, inter-zoo program coordinated nationally through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Zoo New England is an active participant in this program. SSPs are designed to maintain genetically diverse and demographically stable captive populations of species.

More info and great pics, below the fold!

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Peekaboo, Little Red Panda!

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A baby Red Panda has arrived at Franklin Park Zoo!  Born on June 19, the male cub stayed in the nest box for about 90 days with his mother, Carys, and is just now peeking out to greet zoo visitors.   Red panda cub 2 (2)

Red panda cub - credit Melissa Durham (2)
Red panda cub and mom 3 (3)Photo Credit:  Franklin Park Zoo (1,2,4); Melissa Durham (3)

The cub was recently given access to the outdoor exhibit, which means he can choose to stay indoors or outdoors.  A video monitor allows zoo visitors to see the cub in the nest box if he is not outdoors.

“We are thrilled to announce this exciting birth. Carys has proven to be an excellent mother and she is doing everything an attentive Red Panda mother should,” said John Linehan, Zoo New England President and CEO, who added, “The cub is very curious and it is fun to watch him explore and learn new skills from his mother.”

Zoo New England participates in the Red Panda Species Survival Plan (SSP), which is a cooperative, inter-zoo program coordinated by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). SSPs are designed to maintain genetically diverse and demographically stable captive populations of species. This birth is the result of a recommended breeding between Carys and her mate, Yang. This is the first cub for Carys.

Red Pandas live in the cool temperate bamboo forests in the provinces of Sichuan and Yunnan in China, as well as in the Himalayas and Myanmar. Red Pandas have a small bony projection on their wrists that helps them grip bamboo stalks, which make up a significant portion of their diet. This species is declining and threatened by habitat loss in the wild.  Red Pandas are listed as Vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

 


Two-Toed Sloth Hangs Out with Mom at Franklin Park Zoo

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Franklin Park Zoo, in Boston, is pleased to announce the birth of a Linne’s Two-Toed Sloth!

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Sloth Boston_2Photo Credits: Franklin Park Zoo/Zoo New England (1,3,7), Sarah Woodruff (2,4,5), Katelyn Deaton (6)

 

The baby, born August 12, is the offspring of Nero, age 8, and Lunesta, age 10. The baby can be seen on exhibit with its mother, Lunesta, in the Little Critters building within the Children’s Zoo. The baby, whose sex is not yet known, underwent its first medical examination on August 14 and appears healthy, bright and alert.

Linne's Two-Toed Sloths are currently classified as “Least Concern” on the IUCN Red List, but efforts to preserve that status are essential to future survival.  Franklin Park Zoo, part of the Zoo New England Corp, participates in the Linne’s Two-Toed Sloth Species Survival Plan (SSP), which is a cooperative, inter-zoo program coordinated nationally through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). SSPs are designed to maintain genetically diverse and demographically stable captive populations of species.

Linne’s Two-Toed Sloths are large, furry mammals that live in trees and are found in the tropical forests of South America. They spend almost their whole lives dangling upside-down from branches that they hold on to with all four clawed feet. While these animals move really well through the branches, once they are on the ground they are very slow and vulnerable to predators as they are not built for walking.

Sloths eat mainly a vegetarian diet of leaves and shoots, and they spend roughly 15 hours a day sleeping. Although they live in trees, sloths are not related to monkeys; rather, their closest relatives are the anteater and the armadillo.

See more photos of the new baby, below the fold.

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Endangered Siberian Crane Hatches at Franklin Park Zoo

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Franklin Park Zoo in Massachusetts has announced the successful hatching of a rare Siberian Crane chick. Hatched on May 6, the chick is the offspring of Sneetch, age 20, and Shakti, age 22.

In the wild, Siberian Cranes breed in the high Arctic regions of Siberia. These Endangered birds stand about 4 feet (120 cm) tall and are noted for their pure white plumage and black flight feathers. It is estimated that only 3,000 of these birds remain in the wild.

There are only 21 Siberian Cranes in captivity in four North American institutions accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Franklin Park Zoo has six Siberian Cranes including the new chick. Since 1999, there have been eight chicks, including the newest chick, hatched at the zoo.

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3 cranePhoto credit: Franklin Park Zoo

This success is the result of a lot of hard work and technical expertise. The chick at Franklin Park Zoo is a result of artificial insemination. The chick’s parents, a breeding pair, have resided at Franklin Park Zoo since 1996. Because these birds hail from the high Arctic regions, each year on February 14 the zoo staff increases the amount of light in the birds’ exhibit by one hour a week to simulate the light cycle in their native environment. The light is increased until the birds receive 21 to 22 hours of light a day. Once the light cycle reaches this point, the birds typically begin breeding. Franklin Park Zoo is actually the first zoo in North America to have successfully bred this endangered species.

“Siberian Cranes are an incredible species with an important conservation story to tell. Every successful hatch is important as it helps to hedge against this species’ extinction,” said John Linehan, Zoo New England president and CEO. “With any new birth or hatch, there is always risk but we are hopeful that this new chick will continue to thrive and will contribute to the survival of its species.”


African Pygmy Falcon Chicks Hatch at Franklin Park Zoo

Falcon chicks ages 12 and 7 days old - credit Sarah Woodruff

Two tiny African Pygmy Falcon chicks hatched on February 3 and February 8 are being hand-reared at the Franklin Park Zoo in Massachusetts.

Falcon chicks ages 13 and 8 days old - credit Sarah Woodruff

African pygmy falcon chicks, ages 7 and 12 days old - credit Jess Horens...
Photo Credits: Sarah Woodruff (1,2);  Jess Horens (3)

 

While the zoo staff always prefers to have baby animals raised by their parents, the staff feared the chicks would not survive without intervention.  The parents’ behavior during incubation showed that they would not have the skills to raise their chicks, so the eggs were placed in an incubator.   

Like any baby bird, raising African Pygmy Falcon chicks is extremely time-consuming.  In the first week after hatching, the staff fed the small birds six to seven times a day. Each week, the number of daily feedings decreases as the birds consume more food at each meal. By 24 to 26 days old, the birds will be able to feed themselves. 

“It takes a very dedicated effort to raise these tiny falcons,” said Fred Beall, Zoo New England General Curator. “We have had great success with this species at Franklin Park Zoo and are one of only a few zoos in North America that is successfully breeding African Pygmy Falcons. These hatches are a real reason to celebrate.”

Franklin Park Zoo has exhibited African Pygmy Falcons since 1999. The chicks are the offspring of a female that hatched at Franklin Park Zoo in 2012.

African Pygmy Falcons are native to the arid and semi-arid grasslands of eastern and southern Africa. These birds, which weigh less than one pound as adults, are the smallest of all African birds of prey and are about the same size as an American Robin.  


Little Roo Joey For Franklin Park Zoo!

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Franklin Park Zoo has a new addition - a Red Kangaroo joey! The joey is approximately six months old and began to poke its head out of its mother’s pouch a few weeks ago. Kangaroo babies are born after a very short 30 to 35 day gestation and are about the size of a jelly bean. Joeys begin to emerge from the pouch for short periods at around 190 days. They will feed from the mother for up to a year, but at about eight months will start to try solid food.

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Photo credits: Sarah Woodruff / Franklin Park Zoo

The joey, whose sex is not yet known, was born to mother Skippy, age 6, and father Binowee (an Aboriginal word meaning “green place”), age 4. The birth marks the first joey at Franklin Park Zoo since 2005.

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The Red Panda Party Don't Stop!

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The Red Panda explosion of late has us wondering: Will the lesser Panda party ever stop? Is that confetti in this little cub's mouth? Regardless, you can't have enough Red Panda babies in your life, so break out the streamers, it's Panda time once again! This pair was born at Franklin Park Zoo on July 4 to Stella Luna, age 6, and Yang, age 5. The typical gestation period for Red Pandas is about 134 days, and females give birth to one to four cubs. Born helpless and with eyes closed, the cubs stay in the nest box with their mother for about the first 90 days. The twins are expected to be on public view sometime in this month. Party on!

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Photo credits: Franklin Park Zoo


UPDATE: Western Lowland Gorilla Growing Up!

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Nearing her one year birthday,Western Lowland Gorilla baby Kambiri is thriving at the Franklin Park Zoo. Mom Kiki and Dad Kitombe did an excellent job in raising her. The baby, born November 3 inside Franklin Park Zoo’s Tropical Forest, was originally featured on Zooborns.com during her first well-baby visit to the vet. She was found to be very healthy then and it shows! We thought you'd like to see her and wish her happy birthday.

She's now eating leafy greens with the baby teeth that are starting to come in, playing with her blanket and dozing against mom.

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Photo Credit:Don Crasco

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Baby Bongo Born at Franklin Park Zoo

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A bongo calf, the offspring of Annakiya, age 7, and Junior, age 5, was born on exhibit at the Franklin Park Zoo in Boston, MA, on June 15, before the Zoo opened to the public. The gender has not yet been determined. Mom Annakiya was also born at the Zoo and the calf can be seen on exhibit with her.

“The baby has been observed nursing and is moving around, which are very positive signs. As with all new births, we will closely monitor the mother and baby,” said John Linehan, Zoo New England President and CEO, adding, “This is not only an exciting birth for the zoo, but it is also a significant one. This calf will join the rest of our animals in delighting visitors and highlighting the importance of protecting natural habitats around the world.”

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 Photo Credit: Photo 1 Sarah Woodruff, Photo 2-4 Christina Demetrio

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It's a Girl (Gorilla) for Franklin Park Zoo!

It’s another girl for Western Lowland Gorillas Kiki and Kitombe! The baby, born November 3 inside Franklin Park Zoo’s Tropical Forest, received her first well-baby examination by the Zoo’s veterinary staff this morning at which time her gender was confirmed. During the examination, the baby was separated from her mother so the veterinary staff could weigh her and draw blood. The baby weighs 6.6 pounds and measures 18 inches long.

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Baby gorilla zoo new england 1_picnik

“The examination went very well. The baby is very alert and appears healthy and strong,” said Dr. Eric Baitchman, Zoo New England Director of Veterinary Services. “While we will continue to closely monitor the baby’s development, we are happy with her progress so far. Kiki is an excellent mother with a lot of experience and she is doing everything a gorilla mother should.”

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Baby gorilla zoo new england 3Photo credits: Franklin Park Zoo

Franklin Park Zoo is home to eight Western Lowland Gorillas, including the baby, and all reside inside the Tropical Forest. ZNE is an active participant in the Gorilla Species Survival Plan (SSP), which is a cooperative, inter-zoo program coordinated nationally through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). SSPs are designed to maintain genetically diverse and demographically stable captive populations of species, like these critically endangered Gorillas. Kiki’s pregnancy was the result of a recommended breeding by the SSP.