Sheep

“Mary Had a (Very) Little Lamb!”

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A tiny Ouessant Lamb was born earlier this month at Paradise Park in Hayle, Cornwall, UK.

Park Director, Nick Reynolds, commented, “We keep Ouessant Sheep in the Fun Farm here at Paradise Park. As one of the world's smallest breeds, their lambs are very tiny and very cute…hopefully visitors will be able to catch a glimpse of our new arrival.”

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4_Ouessant Lamb Paradise Park Cornwall 3Photo Credits: Paradise Park

The Ouessant (or Ushant) is a breed of domestic sheep from the island of Ouessant off the coast of Brittany, France. Occasionally called the Breton Dwarf, it is one of the smallest breeds of sheep in the world. Rams are around 49 centimetres (19 in) tall at the shoulder, and the ewes about 45 centimetres (18 in).

Most Ouessant are black or dark brown in color, but white individuals do occur. The rams have relatively large horns, and ewes are polled.

The Ouessant existed exclusively on its home island until the beginning of the 20th century, and it is still a rare breed today.

The breed is primarily used for wool production. In Paris, the city government recently began using a small herd of Ouessant sheep to graze public lands.

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The Living Desert Debuts Bighorn Lamb

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The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens is excited to announce the birth of a Bighorn lamb. The female was born February 18 and weighed in at 3.9 kilograms at her newborn wellness check. Zoo officials say both mother and baby are doing well.

“We are thrilled with the birth of this Bighorn lamb, as they are native to our area and play an important, iconic role in our desert habitat,” said Allen Monroe, President/CEO of The Living Desert. “The Living Desert participates with other zoos from around the country in the Bighorn Sheep Species Survival Plan (SSP) and we are proud of our participation in the efforts to preserve this endangered species.”

The lamb’s father is five-years-old Dante who sired seven lambs at the San Diego Wild Animal Park prior to arriving at The Living Desert in the summer of 2014. The mother, Margo, is almost eight-years-old and also came to The Living Desert from the San Diego Wild Animal Park in 2009.

Bighorn lambs are born with soft, woolly, light-colored coats and small horn buds. Within a day, a lamb can walk and climb as well as its mother. A lamb will stay with its mother for the first year of its life.

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3_Bighorn Lamb Feb 2016 - 2Photo Credits: The Living Desert

Bighorn Sheep (Ovis canadensis) are one of two species of mountain sheep in North America. They range in color from light brown to grayish or dark brown, and have a white rump and lining on the backs of all four legs. Bighorn Sheep get their name from the large, curved horns on the males, or rams. They are legendary for their ability to climb high, steep, rocky mountain areas.

At the beginning of the nineteenth century, there were between 1.5 million to two million Bighorn Sheep in North America. Today, there are less than 70,000.

The SSP Programs significantly contribute to field conservation efforts, species recovery, veterinary care for wildlife disease issues, establishment of assurance populations, and many other species-focused conservation efforts.

“As the national SSP Coordinator for the Bighorn Sheep, I am so excited to welcome this lamb. She will help provide genetic diversity to our managed populations,” said Maureen McCarty, The Living Desert’s Special Projects Coordinator and the Bighorn Sheep SSP Coordinator.

The new lamb is currently on exhibit with the herd at The Living Desert.

The Living Desert is an AZA-accredited zoo and gardens, located in Palm Desert, California, that is dedicated to conservation and education. It is a family-friendly place to explore nature and create meaningful experiences for visitors that are remembered for a lifetime. For more information visit: www.LivingDesert.org.


New Lambs at Philly Zoo Are ‘Spot On’

11025948_10152719069257934_4040006812025222370_oKidZooU, at the Philadelphia Zoo, is home to two new baby Jacob Sheep! 

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11018870_10152719069267934_1840938447650503660_oPhoto Credits: Philadelphia Zoo

Born to mom, ‘Cambria’, both lambs are strong, healthy, and bonding well with their mother. The pair were standing, walking, and nursing within an hour of birth. 

The Jacob Sheep is a rare breed of small, multi-horned sheep. Mature rams weigh about 54 to 82 kg (120 to 180 lb), while adult ewes weigh about 36 to 54 kg (80 to 120 lb). They may have anywhere from two to six horns, but they typically have four. Both sexes grow horns, but females exhibit smaller, shorter, and more delicate horns than rams. They are ‘piebald’ (colored with white spots), and their most common coloring is black-and-white.

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Meet Button, The MacArthur Marino Lamb!

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Visitors to Taronga's Backyard to Bush got a surprise last Friday when the zoo's MacArthur Merino Sheep, Berry, gave birth on exhibit! The healthy female lamb, who keepers’ have named Button, can now be seen alongside mum at Taronga’s farmyard.

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Springtime Brings Lambs to Artis Zoo

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Two lambs were born at Artis Zoo in Amsterdam during the first week of March. Within four hours, the lambs could stand upright and drink their first milk. After a few days, they will begin to eat grass and hay.

The petting zoo at Artis has Cameroon Sheep and Hampshire Down Sheep, as well as goats, rabbits, guinea pigs and Kunekune pigs. 

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Photo Credits: Artis Zoo

Watch the lambs venture out into the petting zoo with their mother:
 

Lamb Born at Central Park Zoo Signals the End of Winter

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March went in and out like a lamb this year – represented by this new Babydoll Lamb at the Central Park Zoo’s Tisch Children’s Zoo. Born on March 1 to mom Turnip and dad Sid, the arrival of the lamb, named Kiwi, is a sure sign that spring is upon us.

Besides being easy on the eyes, these teddy bear-faced sheep are intelligent, quite docile and tame easily. The gentle creatures measure less than 24" tall from the shoulder once fully grown, and as adults, weigh 70 to 150 pounds. They make good weeders and lawn mowers, as they graze all through the day on grasses. 

As senior keeper Rob Gramzay has noticed, Kiwi is getting bigger and bigger by the day. She was only about 7 pounds (3.18 kilos) when she was born -- but now she's an armful! 

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Photo Credit: Julie Larsen Maher


In The Midst of The Hurricane, a Lamb is Born

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A lamb was born at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Central Park Zoo in New York City on Saturday, August 27 --the day Hurricane Irene hit. Born in a stable as the city braced for the storm, she has been named Irene Hope.

Early Saturday morning as curators and staff were readying the zoo for the hurricane, the lamb was found cuddled next to her mother, Truffle, in the Tish Children’s Zoo. She weighed 4 kilograms or about 8 pounds. Her father is named Sid.  Irene Hope will nurse for approximately 3-4 months.

“On a day of great uncertainty for New York City, the lamb brought smiles and hope to all of us at the zoo,” said Susan Cardillo, an assistant curator for Central Park Zoo. “We had to name her Irene Hope. She was a big surprise. It is rare to see a lamb born in late August.”

After finding the lamb and making sure she was healthy, Irene Hope was secured with her mother in their stable as the storm roared through the area. The first 24 hours of nursing is critical to a lamb’s health. As flood waters receded around the zoo early on Sunday, Cardillo was relieved when she found lamb and ewe resting peacefully. Irene Hope is a Southdown or baby doll sheep, one of the oldest breeds of sheep that originate from Sussex, England. 

Mom & Lamb

Photo Credit: Julie Larsen/WCS

 


Prague's New Lamb Is a "Dall"

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Prague Zoo has welcomed its first Alaskan or Dall Sheep lamb. The birth is relatively rare for zoos in general. While the fluffy white lamb's sex is as yet undetermined, if it is male, it will grow long curled horns. The new lamb is playful and able to spring about with dexterity, even at this young age. Its wild cousins use these skills to navigate the rugged and inhospitable terrain of the Alaskan wilderness.

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Photo credits: Tomáš Adamec


Los Angeles Zoo is Bursting with Babies!

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Photo credits: Tad Motoyama

The Los Angeles Zoo’s Koala joey, Peninsular Pronghorn twins and desert Bighorn Sheep made their media debut yesterday.

The Zoo’s baby boom kicked off last year with the July 6 birth of a female Koala. Since newborn Koalas spend about six months developing in the mother’s pouch, this joey has just recently begun to emerge. Baby Koalas are commonly referred to as joeys. When a Koala is born, it is just three-fourths of an inch long. After birth they climb into the mother’s pouch and stay there for six months. For the following six months, they are weaned from milk to eucalyptus as they stick their heads out of the pouch to eat partially digested leaves. After a year, they leave the pouch for good.

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Although they are often referred to as a “Koala bear,” Koalas belong to the marsupial family. Marsupials are mammals whose females typically rear their young in a pouch through early infancy. Other members of the marsupial family are Kangaroos, Wallabies, Wallaroos, Wombats and Opossums. Native to Australia, Koalas have a very low metabolic rate requiring them to conserve energy and to sleep between 18 and 20 hours a day. They spend about three of their five active hours eating a diet that consists entirely of eucalyptus leaves. Koalas consume 2 ½ pounds of leaves per day and rarely drink water due to the moisture found in eucalyptus leaves.

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March 20, brought the birth of a female Desert Bighorn Sheep. This species is native to the high mountains and deserts of the south western United States and northern Mexico. Preferring to reside in places with rocky terrain and access to water, they completely avoid forested areas.

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Bighorn Sheep can be seen in our local San Gabriel Mountains, though their population is threatened by many factors including drought, predators, disease and fires. The most recognizable characteristic of the Bighorn Sheep is the male’s massive, spiraled horns and their majestic faces. These horns may add up to one third of their total body weight when they’re full grown. Females have much smaller horns.

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On March 1, two Peninsular Pronghorn, one male and one female, were born. Native to Baja California Sur, Mexico, these graceful animals are mostly active at dawn and dusk. Hunting, cattle ranching and agriculture have resulted in the significant decrease of this critically endangered species.

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Newborn Pronghorns take their first steps within 30 minutes of birth. By the time they are four days old, they can outrun humans. After just a week, fawns can run faster than dogs and horseback riders over short distances. They are the second fastest land mammal and the fastest ungulate (hoofed mammal), clocking in at anywhere from 40 to 60 miles per hour. They can maintain this speed, without showing any sign of distress, for an hour or longer.

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Typically, a Pronghorn mother will have one or two fawns weighing in at around seven or eight pounds. When they reach adulthood, pronghorns weigh up to 125 pounds and reach a height of 35 inches. The females are usually 10 to 25 percent smaller then males.


L.A. Zoo Announces Birth of BigHorn Sheep

On Monday, April 26, 2010, a female desert bighorn sheep was born at the Los Angeles Zoo.  The healthy newborn lamb is on exhibit with her parents in the North American area of the Zoo. As male desert bighorn sheep mature, they develop massive spiraled horns that may add up to one third of their total body weight.  Females have much smaller horns.  However, both sexes have excellent vision and hearing as well as an innate ability for climbing rugged terrain.

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Photo Credits: Tad Motoyama / Los Angeles Zoo

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