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Aardvark Baby edited 13 small

Colchester Zoo’s group of Aardvarks welcomed a healthy offspring on March 15, adding to the most successful Aardvark breeding program in the United Kingdom, and one of the most successful groups in Europe. The calf, whose gender has not been confirmed, was born to female Aardvark Oq.

Aardvark baby8
Photo Credit:  Colchester Zoo

Sarah Forsyth, one of Colchester Zoo’s curators, said, “We believe the baby is female and she has grown a great deal already! She is starting to venture into the outside enclosure at night and as usual, Oq is proving to be a great mother.” The new arrival will be named by keepers once the sex is confirmed.

Oq and baby are currently housed in the birthing burrow while the baby grows stronger. When the youngster is strong enough, they will join the rest of the group, who are notoriously clumsy. Until Oq and baby join the group on exhibit, visitors can see them via closed circuit television.

Aardvarks are native to grasslands and open woodlands throughout sub-Saharan Africa. They feed on ants, termites, and fruits. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, Aardvarks are listed as Vulnerable due to changes in land use and intensive crop farming.