Wellington Zoo

Rescued Owl Ready to Fly

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A rescued Owl is ready to be returned to the wild after receiving expert care at New Zealand’s Wellington Zoo.

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10926824_10152810244493462_9044059940995389830_oPhoto Credit:  Wellington Zoo

The young Morepork Owl was brought to the zoo in early December and cared for in the zoo’s unique Nest Te Kōhanga, a veterinary hospital dedicated to caring for New Zealand’s native fauna.  The little Owl now has his adult feathers and is ready to be released into the big wide world.  For the first two weeks of his release, he’ll live in an outdoor aviary run by a local sanctuary.  A lamp hanging outside the aviary will attract moths, allowing the Owl to practice his hunting skills.  After two weeks, the door will be opened and the Owl can choose to fly away or return for food if needed.

Morepork Owls are New Zealand’s only surviving native Owls, and live only in New Zealand and Tasmania.  They are also known by their Maōri name (Ruru) and Australian name (Boobook), both of which reflect the Owls' two-part calls.  These small owls live in forests and frequent urban parks.  They feed on large invertebrates such as caterpillars, beetles, and moths.  


2 New Meerkat Pups For Wellington Zoo

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New Zealand's Wellington Zoo welcomed a pair of Meerkat pups in January. The couplet is vivacious and healthy according to zoo officials. The birth of new Meerkats is a great opportunity for zoo visitors to observe how each Meerkat has special duties that benefit the group. The babysitters stay close to the burrow with youngsters under their care. The sentries will scan the horizon and sky for predators and the hunters will dig for food, some of which will be given to the young. The young will accompany the group on foraging trips from about 2 months.

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Photo credits: Wellington Zoo


Four Little Meerkat Pups Develop Confidence!

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Four little meerkat pups were born on October 31, at Wellington Zoo in New Zealand. Their mother is named Feta... but the father is unknown. Feta could have paried off with any one of the 5 males in the mob.

One of the babies first ventured out into the sunshine on exhibit with the others at only three weeks old. The rest of it's siblings stayed behind in the den. Meerkats are highly social and live groups called mobs, which made up of as many as three family groups (up to 30 individuals total). Each family group is made up of parents and their offspring.

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Mum and pup

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Photo Credit: Wellington Zoo

Now over 6 weeks old, they all have been out in the yard. Not only that - they have gotten confident enough to attempt snagging their food right from the grown ups, as seen in the video below!

 


Surprise! It's a Tiny Pygmy Marmoset

 
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A tiny baby clings to it's father's fur at the Wellington Zoo in New Zealand.... a bit of a surprise to the Keepers there Friday morning. They had suspected that now-mom Piccu was pregnant, but at some point during the night on October 6, the Zoo's 6th Pygmy marmoset came into the world.

The baby's sex won't be determined for 30-60 days when it has it's first well-baby check up. During that time, in fact up until about three months, the father will continue to carry the baby, excpet when it goes back to it's mother to nurse. Once gender is determined, the Keepers will come up with a name. 

Pygmy marmosets are the smallest monkey in the world, with an adult weighing about 3-5 ounces (85-140 gms) and from head to tail reaching the length of about 13 inches (330 mm). They are not listed as Endangered but they are in danger of becoming such due primarily to habitat destruction.  The fact that they are extrememly adaptable to their environment helps quite a bit. They live in the Amazon rainforest of Columbia, Ecuador, Bolivia, Brazil and Peru and can be found high up in trees near riverbeds.

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Photo Credit: Wellington Zoo


Labrador Shows Lonely Dingo Pup the Ropes

At New Zealand's Wellington Zoo, a young Labrador mix is teaching a Dingo puppy the art of being a canine. Percy, a yellow lab who was abandoned and picked up by the SPCA, is playing companion to young Wolfrik, Wellington's sole Dingo pup. According to zoo officials, Percy is a bit older and wiser, and hasn't been shy about putting young Wolfrik in his place. The zoo hopes that they will be able to find a mate for Wolfrik, at which point Percy will be adopted by one of the zoo's staff. The Dingo is a primitive canine species found only on the Australian continent. It is often mistakenly thought that Dingoes do not bark.

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Wolfrik lunges for a nibble on Percy's ear

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Wolfrik goes for higher ground

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It's exhausting being this rambunctious.


Maybe the Dingo Ate Your Kibble...

Dingoes are not domestic dogs but boy does this little pup look like one! New Zealand's Wellington Zoo welcomed a new Dingo puppy from Australia this past Friday, July 23rd. There is a common misconception that Dingoes were simply domestic dogs that went wild but they are actually a distinct evolutionary line. The most popular theory suggests that Australian Dingo developed from semi-tame wolf-like ancestors that accompanied humans to the continent around 4,000 years ago.

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