On Monday, February 27th, after an 8.5 month gestation period, Artis Zoo Gorilla Dafina gave birth to a healthy baby boy. Artis, The Netherlands' oldest zoo, is already home to 10 gorillas, two of which were born last year. There are plenty of experienced moms for Dafina to learn from, although she appears to be having no trouble playing the part. From birth, gorilla mothers typically hold their young tightly to their belly buttons, making it difficult for keepers to determine their sex, often for weeks. By a stroke of luck, Dafina lifted the young baby in the presence of keepers late yesterday, giving them a clear view that the tiny baby is in fact a boy. He's been given the name Douli, after a place in the Gabon state of Africa.
Three baby Tapirs are taking 2012 by storm! First it was the U.K.'s Chester Zoo, whose female Tapir, Jennifer, gave birth to a little girl (pictured above) on December 27. The calf, named Talia, is doing really well and has already been seen out and about, foraging for food. Then on New Year's Eve a male South American Tapir (2nd and 3rd pictures) was born at the Netherlands' Artis Zoo. Last but not least, Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo welcomed a female Tapir calf (last 2 pictures) on New Years Day. There are four species of tapir native to Southeast Asia and in Central and South America, all of which are classified as endangered due to ongoing decline.
The Artis Zoo in Amsterdam, Netherlands welcomed a tiny baby gorilla just over one week ago. The infant, whose sex and name have yet to be determined, is under the close care of her experienced mother, Shindy. The expressive young gorilla is a huge hit with zoo visitors, and so far with the other gorillas in Artis' troupe as well.
Photo credits: A.J. Haverkamp
A Muntjac, sometimes called a Barking Deer, is the oldest known species of deer. The Muntjac first appeared some 15 to 35 million years ago in Germany, France, and Poland, but its current range is South Asia including Sri Lanka, China, Taiwan, Japan, India and Indonesia. A.J. Haverkamp photographed this baby Muntjac at Amsterdam's Artis Zoo just days ago.
Late Friday night, Amsterdam's Atris Zoo welcomed its third baby Giant Anteater. The delivery took a little over an hour, after which the baby climbed on the back of its mother, where it will spend the better part of its first year of anteater life. The young are almost invisible to predators on their mothers' backs, as the stripes of mother and baby naturally blend together.
Giant Anteaters have a remarkably long snout, a 60 inch tongue and long claws on the forelegs. The gestation period of the great anteater is about six months.
Photo Credit: Ronald van Weeren
The Gundi is a small rodent found in the rocky desert regions of Northern Africa. Female Gundis usually produce two offspring at a time after a two month period of gestation. Since moisture is so scarce in their native desert environment, mothers produce very little milk and their young are fully weaned within four weeks. These photos were taken over the weekend at Artis Zoo by visitor and regular ZooBorns contributor A.J. Haverkamp.
Spotted: Interspecies conoodling at the San Francisco Zoo...
Photographer Susan Pettitt caught these kangaroos coming nose to nose with a wild squirrel just the other day at the San Francisco Zoo...
Momma meerkat valiantly protects her babe, but we suspect Dayo is "meer"ly curious...
If these guys don't remind you of "Gizmo" from Gremlins, I don't know if anything will. A.J. Haverkamp captured these priceless marmoset moments at the Artis Zoo in Amsterdam just the other day. There are actually two babies in that fluffy mound, can you make out both? Thanks for the incredible pics A.J.!
After a snack with Mom, baby Dayo gets ready for piggyback lessons...
"Dafina walked a couple of times around with Dayo on her back. He knows how to do it, he faced the right way all the time. Dafina could even signal him to climb a bit higher on her back. You can tell by the look on Dayo's face that he loves to be on that warm & soft back."
Dayo almost has the hang of it, but backwards is sometimes easier (and softer!)