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August 2009

Rare Ducklings Born at the Louisville Zoo

Although adult Meller's Ducks look very similar to the common Mallard, they are a distinct, and highly endangered species native only to Madagascar. Keepers at the Louisville Zoo were startled to discover two eggs in the Meller's Duck enclosure during a routine cleaning in May. After 26 days in the incubator, two tiny ducklings were born and are doing well.

Baby duck louisville zoo 1

Baby duck louisville zoo 4

Baby duck louisville zoo 2
Photo credits: Kara Bussabarger / Louisville Zoo

A Healthy 251 lb Baby!

After 22 months of pregnancy, mother elephant Christie gave birth to a high-spirited female calf weighing in at 251 lbs or 114 kg at Utah's Hogle Zoo. According to the Zoo's Elephant Manager, Doug Tomkinson, the birth went remarkably quickly and easily. Part of the AZA's Species Survival Plan for African Elephants, this birth contributes to the sustainable population of this species in North America.

Baby elephant hogle zoo 1

Baby elephant calf hogle zoo 2

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Piping Plover Chicks Released back into the Wild

Once abundant throughout shorelines on the East Coast and Midwest, hunting and human development reduced the Piping Plover population to an estimated 20-30 individuals along the Great Lakes. However, since conservation began in earnest in the mid 1980s, the population has recovered to at least 70 breeding pairs counted in 2009. 

Just a few weeks agos, three abandoned Piping Plover eggs were discovered along Lake Michigan and transferred to the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago. Hatched and reared by zoo staff, the grown chicks were returned to Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in Michigan on Aug. 7th. 

Piping plover chick 1

Piping plover chick 2

Piping plover chick 3

Piping plover chick 4

Learn more by reading on or at the US Fish and Wildlife Service site.

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