Oklahoma City Zoo

Giraffe Calf Meets the Family at Oklahoma City Zoo

1 giraffe

The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden is celebrating a special fall delivery—a female giraffe born on September 26! The newborn is the sister of Sergeant Peppers, a male giraffe born in January 2012 to zoo favorites Ellie and Bogy.  Another sister, Keyara, was born at the Zoo in January 2010. The new arrival, who already stands six feet tall, will be named by her caregivers. The calf is pictured above with her brother, during her first day outside on October 1, as mom Ellie looks on. 

“Both mom and calf are doing well,” said Jaimee Flinchbaugh, the zoo's hoofstock supervisor. “Ellie is a doting mom and her calf is full of energy, personality and spunk.”

Average gestation for a Giraffe calf is approximately 15 months. Giraffes give birth while standing and unlike humans, the calf is born hooves-first. The calf then proceeds to stand, usually within one hour after birth. In the wild, it is important for a newborn Giraffe to be able to stand quickly to elude predators. 

5 giraffe

2 giraffe

3 giraffe

4 giraffe

6 giraffePhoto credits: Jaimee Flinchbaugh / Oklahoma City Zoo

Depending on weather conditions, zoo guests may be able to see the calf mid- morning through early afternoon hours. The zoo’s twice-a-day public Giraffe feeding opportunities will continue, weather permitting. However, mom Ellie will not be participating until her caregivers believe she is comfortable with the feeding platform area and crowds.


Baby Gorilla Gets a Name at Oklahoma City Zoo

542640_10151293170702385_2059219128_n

A male Western Lowland Gorilla born at the Oklahoma City Zoo on Valentine’s Day was given a name on his one-month birthday:  the baby will be called Leom, which combines the last two letters of his mother’s name, Kelele, and his father’s name, Bom Bom.

Leom is the first birth for 19-year-old Kelele, who has ben providing excellent care to her newborn. Female Gorillas carry their infants 24 hours a day, never putting them down.  Leom’s father, Bom Bom, was a beloved 36-year-old silverback who died in July 2012 of cardiac arrest.

482178_10151292060262385_2072637965_n

69250_10151268796857385_338489981_n

542640_10151293170697385_19459690_n

542640_10151293170692385_884384376_n
Photo Credits:  Andrea Wright (1,3,4,5); Gillian Lang (2)

The zoo’s three young male Gorillas, who have never seen a baby Gorilla before, are very curious about Leom.  Kelele, always protective of her baby, keeps her distance from them for now. 

With Leom’s birth, the Oklahoma City Zoo continues its involvement in the Gorilla Species Survival Plan (SSP) through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). One of the SSP's most important roles is to ensure that the Gorilla population remains healthy, genetically-diverse, and self-sustaining.



Baby Chimp Gets a New Family Through Compassion and Collaboration Between AZA Zoos

C teeth

The Oklahoma City Zoo is known nationally for their capacity to foster infant Chimpanzees, and now there is a new member to their troop. Seven-month-old Ruben arrived on July 30, after being hand-raised at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo. Ruben's mother, Rukiya, died just 24 hours after giving birth during a medical proceedure. It was a rough start for baby Ruben both to lose his mom.  After being treated roughly by his biological dad and not be accepted by that zoo's surrogate mom, it was apparent: Ruben needed a new home.

Those who had given him round-the-clock care at Lowry Park Zoo accompanied Ruben when it came time to move, and stayed to monitor his progress during the first 72 hours of transition. And the effort has been a success! Just weeks later, Ruben is blending well and being accepted by his new chimp family. Starting with Kito, his surrogate mom, the baby has gradually been introduced to Mwami, the dominant male, and three others in the group.

R Kito

R front
Photo Credit: Oklahoma City Zoo

Our zoo has had two successful Chimpanzee surrogate situations, and we are gaining a good reputation among accredited zoos for it," said Laura Bottaro, Oklahoma City Zoo Mammal Curator. The first occurred in 2008, the second in 2011.

Read more after the fold:

Continue reading "Baby Chimp Gets a New Family Through Compassion and Collaboration Between AZA Zoos" »


Meet KayDee, the Oklahoma Zoo's Rambunctious Baby Red Panda

Panda1

On June 6, Oklahoma City Zoo staffers quietly witnessed the eleventh Red Panda birth in the zoo’s history - a female. This is the first baby for Mom Jaya, who came to the zoo at the end of 2011, but the ninth cub for Yoda, the father. The newborn was named KayDee in honor of Oklahoma City Thunder player Kevin Durant -- known to fans as K.D. -- whose team won it’s first Western Conference championship on that very same night.

“We’ve been eager to introduce KayDee to the public since June,” said Newton “but she needed time to bond with her mother and grow a little before we did.”

After a four-and-a-half month gestation period, KayDee was born weighing less than a pound (.45 kg). First-time mom Jaya cared for her well, and now, at three months old, she weighs approximately 4 pounds (1.8 kg). KayDee is transitioning from nursing to eating solid foods; she's begun chewing bamboo just like her parents and shortly she’ll be able to eat high-fiber, nutritional biscuits, apples, pears, grapes and various enrichment foods. And she is rambunctious - bouncing around and snorting as baby pandas are wont to do! 

Panda3

Panda 2
Photo Credits: Oklahoma City Zoo

Read more about this little Red Panda after the fold:

Continue reading "Meet KayDee, the Oklahoma Zoo's Rambunctious Baby Red Panda" »


It's Raining Red Pandas! Rare Triple Birth in Oklahoma

RED-PANDA-CUBS

Three’s a charm as the Oklahoma City Zoo celebrates the birth of three Red Panda cubs! Born on June 25 to mom “Celeste” and dad “Yoda,” the cubs, two males and one female, are now discovering their outdoor habitat by Zoo Lake. This was the third set of cubs for both parents and a rare occurrence of a triple birth – usually Red Pandas only give birth to two cubs at a time. The cubs mark the eighth, ninth and tenth red panda births to occur at the zoo, with the most recent cub births in June of 2010. The 2010 cubs, a male a female, moved to other zoos in 2010 as part of the Species Survival Plan (SSP). The male went to the Central Park Zoo in New York and the female to the Indianapolis Zoo. These photos are courtesy of the Oklahoman newspaper.

RED-PANDA-CUBS_002

RED-PANDA-CUBS
Photo credits: Bryan Terry, Copyright 2011, The Oklahoman

The birth of the cubs is a great success for the red panda Species Survival Plan, or SSP. The program was developed by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and is a cooperative effort among AZA accredited zoos throughout North America created to help promote genetic diversity through this species management program.

Continue reading "It's Raining Red Pandas! Rare Triple Birth in Oklahoma" »


Bat-Eared Fox Kits Snuggle Up

OK fox trio

Five Bat-eared fox kits - 4 males and 1 female - were born on May 4 in their den at the Oklahoma City Zoo. This was the first offspring for both of their parents and the first litter of bat-eared foxes born at the Zoo since 2005. The kits weigh approximately one to two pounds each. 

Bat-eared foxes are primarily nocturnal and the kits are still spending the majority of their time inside the den and out of sight. Lucky Zoo visitors might catch them scurrying about their yard in the early morning or late evening hours as they start to get older and more active. 

Bat-eared foxes can grow to be about 2 feet long and can weigh anywhere from six to 12 pounds. They are a sandy brown color with darker markings on their ears, nose, feet and tails. Their feet have claws perfectly suited for digging, whether going after a tasty insect or hollowing out a cozy burrow.           

Ok solo

Photo Credit: Jaimee Flinchbaugh

In the wild, Bat-eared foxes live in the dry savannas and brush of eastern and southern Africa and are easily recognized by their huge 5-inch ears. These large lobes serve multiple purposes – they are full of blood vessels that help disperse heat and keep the fox cool, and they give them acute hearing for listening for their primary diet of insects. They can even hear the underground movement of a termite or beetle larvae!


Snow Leopards Cubs Debut in Oklahoma

On May 12th, the Oklahoma City Zoo welcomed two little Snow Leopard cubs but waited until the cubs had had their second round of shots and time to bond with mom before debuting them to the public yesterday. This is the second set of cubs for mother Kiara, who was born at the Tulsa Zoo. Despite being bottle-fed herself, Kiara has proven to be a capable and attentive mother. The cubs are still too young, and the weather too hot, for the cubs to go outside but they will make it out within a few weeks.

Snow leopard cubs oklahoma city zoo 1

Snow leopard cubs oklahoma city zoo 2

Photo credits: Oklahoma City Zoo (see more on their Facebook album)


Baby Chimp Makes Her Debut at OKC Zoo

For the first time, visitors to the Oklahoma City Zoo have the opportunity to meet baby Zoe, a female chimp born all the way back in October, 2008. Sadly, Zoe's biological mother died shortly after her baby's birth. Lucky for Zoe, OKC Zoo staff provided round-the-clock surrogate parent care, even wearing a hairy vest to simulate a mother chimp, until a nurturing and protective surrogate chimp mother could be found. 

Baby chimp zoe oklahoma city zoo 1 rs

Baby chimp zoe okc 4

 Baby chimp zoe oklahoma city zoo 3 rs

More to the story below the fold.

Continue reading "Baby Chimp Makes Her Debut at OKC Zoo" »


Seeing Stripes in Oklahoma

A male Grevy's zebra foal was born on Monday, July 13 to parents Darasa, 11, and Tanga, 14, at the Oklahoma City Zoo. This is Darasa's fourth birth at the Zoo. The Grevy's zebra is the largest of the three zebra species and originates from parts of northern Kenya and southern Ethiopia. Although foals are born with brown stripes and fuzzy coats, they grow into their unique black-and-white stripes by one year of age. These stripes allow them to blend in to their natural habitat. Foals weigh 80 to 125 pounds at birth, but can grow to be over 900 pounds as adults!

083

Skipping Zebra Baby

ZebraOK2.zip

Continue reading "Seeing Stripes in Oklahoma" »