Otter Triplets and A Critically Endangered Infant Part of Drusillas Park’s Summer Baby Boom
October 10, 2021
Staff and visitors who were lucky enough to catch the first glimpses of Drusillas Park’s (Sussex, UK) tiny baby otters in late August noticed something rather unusual about the triplets – their otter-ly fabulous silver coats!
Born in late July, it appears the pearly pups have all inherited the extraordinary gene from their dad, Cheddar, with each infant boasting the same silvery frosted fur.
Not long after welcoming the new arrivals, Keepers noticed that the babies were nothing like any otter pups they’d seen before, and visitors could enjoy seeing Cheddar and mum, Halloumi-Bee, bring their babes out of the nest for the first time.
The triplets take Drusillas count for otter babies over the last couple of years to seven, bringing positive news for the species’ animal welfare throughout BIAZA collections. Asian short-clawed otters are classified as vulnerable as they are under threat from habitat loss and use in the pet trade, and Drusillas is proud to be contributing once again to animal conservation in this way.
Just a few weeks prior, Drusillas was overjoyed to announce the safe arrival of their ape-solutely adorable newest zoo born - a critically endangered Sulawesi crested macaque baby.
The Zoo team are elated to confirm that the cheeky babe, born on 22nd June to mum Kera and dad Moteck, is perfectly healthy, happy and headstrong, as it starts to brave life outside of the protective hold of its mother. The super cute infant has been delighting visitors by trying out some climbing, swinging, tumbling… and falling!
The Sulawesi black crested macaque is categorised as critically endangered in the wild, and is one of over 20 different endangered and rare species living at the East Sussex Zoo. Sadly the macaque population has declined by 80% over the last 40 years. The principal threat to their survival is over-hunting for meat. In Indonesia the macaque is considered a delicacy, and is often served for special occasions. Deforestation is another major threat to the species, with large areas of their habitat now being cleared for coconut plantations, garden plots and roads.
“As well as being totally adorable, the cause for celebration is that much more when we successfully breed a critically endangered species at Drusillas.” Continued Gemma, “The healthy arrival of this pair’s second baby provides a crucial boost for the macaque population, and we’re all really proud to play our part in keeping this beautiful primate from extinction.”
Thousands of people put forward names on the Park’s Facebook naming challenge at the beginning of August, and Drusillas have now confirmed that the baby has been named Kiwi!