The female orangutan born on June 19th at Schönbrunn Zoo has been named “Kendari”. After internal considerations, they finally decided together on the name of an Indonesian city. Indonesia is the original home of the orangutans, where these special animals have now been almost wiped out due to deforestation and illegal trade. “We are very happy that the young animal is developing so well and that we have found a name. Kendari is getting bigger and stronger every day. She is already raising her head and slowly starting to perceive her surroundings with wide eyes. Everything is always in the protective arms of mother animal Sari”, says animal keeper Sandra Keiblinger.
In the last weeks of spring, a total of six Rockhopper penguin chicks have hatched. You can now see the offspring in the "kindergarten" of the Polarium. Twice a day, the young birds are fed with fish and their weight is constantly monitored. Each chick squeezes up to 20 small herring and sprats per day. "They already weigh around one and a half kilograms. Their weight gain is ensured by our keepers so that the young animals can develop healthily. The chicks are still wearing a dune dress that is not water-repellent. Therefore, their enclosure has no access to the water basin. Only when they have the first moult behind them, swimming attempts are dared. Then they come back to the group, because even in the wild they live together in large breeding colonies," reports Zoo Director Stephan Hering-Hagenbeck.
The kid season has already begun for the pied goats called Tauernscheckenziegen and it is almost over. Only one goat is still expecting. The kids are all well and very agile. They already try to climb rocks and tree trunks and savor the first rays of sun.
This goat breed serves multiple purposes. Their claws are very sturdy which is ideal for alpine landscape management. Their udders are very high to minimize the risk of injury. They are very long-living and robust and please with their unique and attractive coat which makes them easily recognizable on alpine pastures during the summer and fall.
"We raise waldrapp chicks by hand to imprint them on us. This imprinting is important for reintroducing them to Europe and leading them to the places where they hibernate. My colleague Lisa Kern and I sit in an ultra-light plane and fly to Tuscany in front of them. To further imprint them on us we spend a lot of time with them all day. We smooch them, we cuddle them and of course we feed them. We always wear the identification color yellow. The plane's umbrella is yellow as well."
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The giraffe calf at Zoo Vienna continues to develop well thanks to the intensive care of the animal care team. It explores its surroundings with interest and dashes through the giraffe park. The little one's main food is still Holstein cow's milk, but she also nibbles on hay and leaves that were frozen for the giraffes to feed in the winter. “Our giraffe girl has shown real willpower and perseverance over the past few weeks. The animal care team has thought a lot about what the little one could be called. In the end, the decision was made to use the name "Amari" - which means "the strong one" in the African language Yoruba," reports Eveline Dungl, the head of the zoological department responsible.
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About a year ago, at the end of January 2021, there was a lot of excitement in Schönbrunn Zoo. More than 70 smuggled, strictly protected chameleons from the Usambara Mountains in Tanzania were confiscated at Schwechat Airport. Among them were the highly endangered prickly-nosed, two-horned and dwarf chameleons. Schönbrunn Zoo took on the emergency care of the exotic animals and housed them in special terrariums. “Chameleons are solitary animals and therefore have to be kept and fed individually, they only come together to mate. Caring for these demanding animals is a particular challenge for us, but it pays off,” says district manager Inez Walter. "In the meantime, all of the rare chameleon species have laid eggs, and the young of three species have already hatched."
There were even more than 80 offspring of the Nguru dwarf chameleons last year. Adult animals are just under six centimeters tall - the tiny young animals measure just one centimeter plus half a centimeter tail. “The Nguru dwarf chameleon is bred in only one other zoo in the world besides ours. We are therefore particularly proud that the work of our team of specialists was rewarded so quickly with these breeding successes," says zoo director Stephan Hering-Hagenbeck. "We hope to be able to build up reserve populations outside of the threatened natural habitat with our offspring in order to counteract the extinction of these species." In the wild, all of the rescued chameleon species are endangered or even threatened with extinction due to habitat destruction and smuggling.
Photo credit: Daniel Zupanc
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For a week now, the giraffe park in Schönbrunn Zoo has had one more resident, a little giraffe girl. Fleur, the young animal's mother, who is inexperienced in giving birth, is much more relaxed than at the beginning, but the nursing team is still very challenged. "We can observe interactions such as the young animal gently licking it, but Fleur does not nurse her offspring," explains Eveline Dungl, the responsible zoological department head. “We feed her, fortunately that works very well now. However, the young animal's condition is not yet completely stable.” When it comes to supplementary feeding, pasteurized Holstein cow's milk is used, which is obtained from an Austrian farmer from Laab im Walde. The composition is very close to that of giraffe's mother's milk. "The experienced giraffe female Carla also calms Fleur and the little one with her confident demeanor," says Dungl.
Body temperature and weight checks are carried out regularly. "In addition to standard examinations, attention must now be paid to whether the offspring tolerate the cow's milk," says Thomas Voracek, head of the veterinary practice at Schönbrunn Zoo. "At the moment, as a vet team, we see our main task as advising the keepers on the composition of the milk, the intervals between feedings and monitoring the developmental stages of the young animal." Peace and quiet is currently the priority for the animals and the care team - the giraffe park will therefore remain closed for the time being.
Austria’s Schönbrunn Zoo is happy to have offspring among the southern dwarf mongooses: three young animals were born in mid-September and are now making their first excursions out of their den. “The young animals are curious and they explore the facility, dig in the sand and play with each other. If one of the little ones moves too far, the adult animals carry it back into the protective burrow in their mouths,” says zoo director Stephan Hering-Hagenbeck. At first glance, dwarf mongooses are often confused with meerkats. No wonder, both species belong to the mongoose family. However, as the name suggests, dwarf mongooses are among the smallest species of mongoose. Even fully grown, they only weigh around 300 grams.
Southern dwarf mongooses are native to the savannahs of eastern and southern Africa. They like to colonize abandoned termite mounds, which give them protection at night and a good view of the surrounding area during the day. It is also insects that are mainly on the menu of the little hunters. Your social system is exciting. Hering-Hagenbeck: “Dwarf mongooses live socially in small groups and rely on teamwork when they live together. Only the highest-ranking female gets the offspring, but everyone helps with the rearing. ”The young animals, whose sex is not yet known, are suckled in the first seven weeks of life. But they already try grasshoppers, mealworms and minced meat.
Photos by: Daniel Zupanc
Zuzu has done it again: The head of the meerkat group at Schönbrunn Zoo had offspring for the third time on July 25th. This time it's just a cub. This is unusual because there are usually two to four young animals in a litter. For the little one, however, it is definitely an advantage. “The young animal is really round. It finally gets all of the milk. In addition, as an only child, it enjoys everyone's full attention. The older sister Chimara likes to look after the little one and is also a playmate, ”says zookeeper Nadine Bräuer. The young animal was born in a protective cave in the earth - only about 30 grams in weight, blind and completely helpless. It is now big enough to accompany the group of seven on their forays through the area.
Meerkats live in the savannas and semi-deserts in southern Africa. Zoo director Stephan Hering-Hagenbeck researched African reptiles as part of his doctoral thesis in the Kalahari. He got to know meerkats as cheeky guys. “They kept sneaking into our tent to steal reptiles or our own food,” recalls Hering-Hagenbeck. Meerkats are small predators. The young animal, whose sex is not yet known, was suckled in the first few weeks. It is now eating insects. Meerkats are known for standing upright on their hind legs to keep an eye out for birds of prey and other dangers. Even the little one can do it like a big one with its four weeks.
Photos: Daniel Zupanc
There are three of the Schönbrunn sloths again. Alberta and Einstein became parents on June 3rd. For the first six months the young animal lies somewhat hidden in its mother's soft peritoneum. In the meantime, however, it has grown a lot and is easy to see. “The news of the offspring is sure to please the many sloth fans. Unfortunately, the last young animal, Pauline, was never seen by our visitors due to the corona protective measures. In the meantime, Pauline has moved to Loro Parque as part of the European Stud Book and hangs out there comfortably, ”says zoo director Stephan Hering-Hagenbeck. The zoo keeper team can only see whether the current offspring is a female or a male when they are no longer so closely attached to their mother.
Two-toed sloths are native to South America. With their comfortable way of life and a nose like a socket, they are among the visitors' favorites in Schönbrunn. If you can't make it to the zoo, you can admire the sloths in the new Family Planner 2022, which was published for the first time. Family life can be organized very well with five columns for personal entries. Sloth father Einstein would only have three things in the crevices: eat, doze and hang around. Alberta's undisturbed sloth existence is now history. District manager Petra Stefan: “Alberta takes care of its eleventh youngster. It is suckled for half a year. But it can also be carried to the food bowl on her stomach and nibbles on vegetables such as celery and lettuce. "