Toronto, Canada (August 3, 2022) – If you have visited Toronto Zoo’s Canadian Domain recently, you’ve probably noticed some very special additions – three wood bison calves! Born the week of June 20th, there are two females and one male. These three little calves are quickly becoming a visitor favourite as they follow the much larger adult females around the paddock, peeking out behind their mothers’ legs.
What makes these little ones extra special is the innovative reproductive techniques that enabled Toronto Zoo to deliberately produce females!
How can Toronto Zoo choose whether to have females or males?
At one-month-old, Toronto Zoo’s newest orangutan was becoming more alert to his surroundings, including making eye contact with the Wildlife Care team. Mom Sekali participated in regular training sessions and was comfortable bringing the baby up to Keepers and allowing them to use a dropper to place Vitamin D drops directly in his mouth. Once this behaviour was completely established, Keepers planned to introduce a baby bottle; this could be helpful in the future if they need to give the baby Pedialyte or medications in a liquid form, or if supplemental milk is required.
TORONTO, ON, Friday, May 27, 2022: Your Toronto Zoo is excited to reveal the names of our #FlamingHotCheetahs! With almost 10,000 votes cast, it was a relatively close race, but the winning group was Toulouse, Berlioz and Marie – named after the kittens in Disney’s Aristocats animated film! A big thank you to everyone who participated! We love including the community in special moments at your Toronto Zoo.
Toronto Zoo's newest Mom and baby continue to do well behind-the-scenes and he nurses often throughout the day. The other orangutans are fascinated by the new arrival, and Sekali continues to seem content to show him off
Please note Sekali and her baby are not currently viewable at this time. We will make an announcement when they are ready to make their public debut.
Your Toronto Zoo is thrilled to announce the birth of a critically endangered Sumatran orangutan, born Friday April 8 at 3:06 p.m. to mother Sekali. The day prior to the birth, Sekali was exhibiting signs of restlessness and discomfort. Keepers monitored her closely overnight and although she seemed to settle down and looked comfortable, it was noted that her eyes were open for a much larger portion of the night than usual. The morning of April 8, keepers noticed Sekali was showing increasing signs of discomfort, and her water broke at 11:30 a.m. Things progressed smoothly right through to the baby’s birth. Sekali’s maternal instincts kicked in right away: she immediately held the baby against her body, cleaned it, and showed concern whenever it vocalized. She even carefully repositioned the umbilical cord when shifting positions and thanks to the maternal training provided by Keepers, Sekali brought the baby up to the Keepers to let them get a close visual check a few hours after it was born – and identify the newborn as a male!
This is the second offspring for twenty-nine-year-old Sekali, who gave birth to her son, Kembali, in 2006, and the first offspring for Budi, a fifteen-year old male. Both Sekali and Budi were born at the Toronto Zoo (to unrelated parents) and were paired at the recommendation of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Orangutan Species Survival Plan (SSP). This cooperative breeding program, coupled with direct support of conservation work in Sumatra, is part of the Toronto Zoo’s commitment to ensure this critically endangered species will survive for future generations. The Toronto Zoo currently houses the only Sumatran orangutans in Canada and, as part of the AZA Sumatran Orangutan SSP, thirteen orangutans have been raised at your Toronto Zoo since 1974.
This adorable footage was posted by the Toronto Zoo about 3 weeks ago, when the cubs (first appearing on ZooBorns in January: https://www.zooborns.com/zooborns/2022/01/your-toronto-zoo-welcomes-birth-of-cheetah-cubs.html ) were still too small to reliably sex. Until they are fully vaccinated and the weather warms up, the new family will remain cozy in their indoor habitat. As they grow and get stronger, they will gradually be introduced to their behind-the-scenes outdoor habitats, and eventually to the main cheetah habitat where you will be able to see them later this spring.
Since the time of this video, The cheetah cubs have received their first full examination from the Veterinary team! We are excited to announce that they have two boys and one girl!
TORONTO, ON, Friday, January 28, 2022: Your Toronto Zoo is excited to announce the arrival of three beautiful cheetah cubs born Monday January 24! Emarah, a 4.5-year-old female cheetah and first-time mom, gave birth in the early hours of the morning after a 92-day pregnancy.
In preparation for cubs, the Wildlife Care team set up a maternity den for Emarah, selecting a quiet space in the cheetah house and furnishing it with a large nestbox lined with a thick layer of bedding. Emarah began exhibiting signs of labour on Sunday, including restlessness and lack of appetite. The team monitored the labour using video cameras in her habitat to ensure her privacy. She gave birth to her first cub just after 3:30 am, followed by a further three cubs over the next few hours. Unfortunately, one of the cubs did not survive, but the remaining cubs appear to be doing well and have been observed nursing and wriggling around close to their mother. When cheetah cubs are born, their eyes are closed, and it will be about a week before they begin to open them to have a look around. During this time we minimize disturbances to give mother and cubs time to bond. The cameras allow the team to monitor Emarah and her new family as she navigates her maternal duties for the first time, and we are pleased to say she is doing very well – a real natural mom! She has been very attentive and has been seen grooming and nursing the cubs, both of which of which are excellent signs for a first-time mother. She also has been comfortable enough to start leaving the den to feed and to stretch her legs.
Unless there is cause for concern, it will be a few weeks before the vets will do their first full quick check on the cubs. Until they are fully vaccinated and the weather warms up, the new family will remain cozy in their indoor habitat; once they are several months old, we will introduce them to the outdoor habitats, including the main cheetah exhibit where guests will be able to visit them.
Emarah was part of the last cheetah litter born at the Toronto Zoo. While her brothers and sister have moved to other accredited zoos as part of the Species Survival Plan (SSP) Program through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), Emarah remained in Toronto . Emarah and her new family are important as her genes are not widespread in Cheetah populations in accredited Zoos. The SSP makes recommendations to best manage the cheetahs in our care. These cubs represent that next step in terms of preserving these important genes to ensure they are protected for the future.
In addition to conservation research, the Toronto Zoo team supports cheetahs in the wild through partnerships with the Cheetah Conservation Fund. Cheetah populations in the wild are declining rapidly, with estimates putting the world population at somewhere around 7000. The primary threats to cheetahs in the wild are the poaching of cheetah cubs to meet demand for illegal pets and human wildlife conflict. You can support Emarah and other threatened cheetahs in the wild by making a donation to the Toronto Zoo Wildlife Conservancy, or through the Adopt an Animal program.
TORONTO, ON, Thursday, October 7, 2021: Twenty-nine-year-old Sumatran orangutan Sekali is going to be a mother again! She and father-to-be Budi (a fifteen-year-old male Sumatran orangutan) were paired at the recommendation of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP), and the Toronto Zoo is thrilled to further contribute to the future of this critically endangered species. Sekali has had one previous offspring (male Kembali, who still lives at the Toronto Zoo); Budi is a first-time father.
The Toronto Zoo announced last month that Tori, a ten-year-old female endangered Grevy's zebra (Equus grevyi), gave birth to a healthy foal in the early morning hours on Tuesday December 1, 2020 weighing 52.1 kilograms… and it’s a boy! This is the fourth foal for mom Tori and the fifth for dad Jake, a thirteen-year-old male. This foal, born as part of the Grevy's Zebra Species Survival Plan (SSP), will help to increase Jake’s underrepresented genetics within the population. Both mom and foal are doing well.
“We are so pleased to welcome this healthy and energetic foal to your Toronto Zoo and be contributing to the population of this endangered species,” says Dolf DeJong, CEO, Toronto Zoo. “With only 3000 individuals remaining in the wild, this is a great example of the critical work done by our world class wildlife care team at the Toronto Zoo to protect this species,” he added.
The Grevy’s zebra has been listed as Endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) for decades. Habitat loss, competition with livestock, and poaching are their primary threats. The Toronto Zoo is part of the AZA Grevy’s Zebra Species Survival Plan (SSP), building our understanding of these incredible animals and supporting field conservation efforts for the species.
Now Toronto Zoo has announced the Grevy’s zebra foal, affectionately known as #BBZeeBee, has a name! With over 8,500 people voting in the “Help Us Name #BBZeeBee" promotion, one name has emerged as the favorite… introducing, Poe! Poe was chosen through online voting from a list of four preselected names, in keeping with the tradition of naming their Grevy’s zebra offspring after Star Wars inspired names, previous zebra babies were named Luke, Leia, Rey and Obi. The naming promotion was launched on Tuesday, December 15, 2020 and ran through Sunday, December 20, 2020 at 11:59 pm.
In the late afternoon of Tuesday, July 14, 2020 The Toronto Zoo welcomed an endangered female red panda cub, affectionately known as #BabyRed, and they need YOUR help to give her a name! Beginning Saturday, September 19, 2020 – in celebration of International Red Panda Day - through Tuesday, September 29, 2020 at 11:59 pm vote at torontozoo.com for your favorite from the selected names below:
Ada - meaning first daughter, happy, prosperous, adored Adira - meaning strong Apple - mom's favorite treat Kenna - meaning born from fire
ZooBorns will cast a vote on your behalf as well! Watch this behind-the-scenes "A Day In The Life Of A Keeper" video and vote in the comments. We'll tally up the votes and submit the most popular name to Toronto Zoo.