Pueblo Zoo

Keepers Raise Tiny Dik Dik at Pueblo Zoo

10648408_10152351559991744_4913354173236862633_oWhen a Kirk’s Dik Dik was born in mid-October at thePueblo Zoo, keepers were thrilled.  But when his mother did not feed the male calf, keepers stepped in to provide daily care.

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Photo Credit:  Pueblo Zoo

Though they look like miniature deer, Dik Diks are small antelope that stand just over a foot high at the shoulder.  Found on eastern Africa’s savannahs, Dik Diks may appear small and vulnerable.  But their excellent eyesight and ability to run up to 26 miles per hour enable them to escape predatory lions, hyenas, and wild dogs. 

In addition, Dik Diks run in zig-zags as they escape, further confounding their pursuers.  As they flee, females emit an alarm call that sounds like “dik dik,” hence their name.

Dik Diks are widespread in Kenya and Tanzania, and populations are considered stable.


River Otter Pups For Pueblo Zoo!

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Three North American River Otter pups were born Monday, March 3, 2014 at the Pueblo Zoo. Keepers were able to get close enough on March 6 to weigh and sex the pups. The zoo confirms there are two females and one male! Judging by their healthy initial weights, the pups seem to be nursing well - 145g (boy), 135g (girl), 155g (big girl!). 

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The pups are currently off exhibit and zookeepers and staff are giving the new family their space. It may be several weeks to more than a month before they are ready to make a public appearance. Their first official wellness exam was Monday. Stay tuned for more updates!


A Sneak Peek at Pueblo Zoo's Maned Wolf Puppies

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Three Maned Wolf puppies were born at Pueblo Zoo in Colorado. The new arrivals were born on February 23rd to first-time parents Cayenne (the female) and Meek (the male). The puppies were delivered in the same den where their grandfather, Cayenne’s father, was born.

Born in the wild or in captivity, survival rate is low for Maned Wolf puppies, and the first few weeks are critical. However, the Pueblo Zoo Staff are cautiously optimistic about the survival of these puppies.

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Photo credits: Pueblo Zoo

Native to central South America, Maned Wolves are ranked by the IUCN as near threatened, due to habitat loss and degradation. Maned Wolves are the only known living member of their genus, making them very unique canines. The are named for the dark mane of hair along the neck and shoulders that can be raised in agression or fear. Standing nearly a meter tall, adult Maned Wolves look similar to Red Foxes, but are easily identified by their exceptionally long and thin legs. Instead of ranging in packs, Maned Wolves are solitary, or may live in monogamous pairs. They eat fruits as well as small animals. 

The species is managed across the country though the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan. The Species Survival Plan ensures that there is genetic diversity among animals in AZA accredited institutions to ensure the best possible pairings for breeding. In the US, there are ninety-two wolves known to the SSP, and overall, there are only fourteen breeding pairs of maned wolves in AZA institutions. The Pueblo Zoo puppies are the only surviving Maned Wolf pups born so far this season. 

See more photos after the fold.

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Baby Sloth Hangs out at Pueblo Zoo

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On October 24, the Pueblo Zoo welcomed a baby Hoffman’s Two-Toed Sloth.

For the first few weeks of life, the baby, whose gender is not yet known, will remain off-exhibit with its mother, Chewie. Pueblo Zoo officials are seeking help to name the baby via the zoo’s Facebook page. The staff’s favorite name? They’d like to continue the “Star Wars” theme started with the mother’s name and call the baby Han.

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Because they subsist on leaves, which provide little energy, Sloths conserve their resources by moving slowly. Their shaggy, algae-covered fur blends expertly with the treetops, making them nearly impossible to see unless they move – which is not often, although sloths will descend to the ground to relocate to a new tree or to defecate, which occurs about once a week. Sloths digest their food very slowly, so slow that up to two-thirds of their body weight may come from leaves in their digestive tract.

Hoffman’s Two-Toed Sloths are found in two separate areas of South America: southern Central America, extending into Colombia and Ecuador, and a separate population in the Andes Mountains of Peru, Brazil, and Bolivia. In both areas, they live an arboreal life in the rain forest canopy. Although forest destruction is likely affecting Sloth populations, not enough is known about this species in the wild to evaluate its status.

Photo Credit: Pueblo Zoo