Noah’s Ark Enjoys Summer Zebra Baby Boom

An eventful August at Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm has brought a new buzz of excitement in the form of Zebra foal, Abasi, who joins fellow three-month-old foal, Astrid and are part of our dazzle of zebras.

Abasi and mum Polly  Zebras at Noah's Ark Zoo Farm - Doug Evens

“Our zebra foals are already developing a lovely playful friendship. Our older foal Astrid, has been very excited by this new arrival and both can often be seen having zoomies!” said Keeper Jayne Gibbons.

Zebras are born with a brown colouring to their coat and will spend their first few months growing until considered an adult at one year old. Grant’s Zebra also have a status of Near Threatened on the IUCN Red List with a decreasing population trend.

Endangered Baby Zebra at Toronto Zoo Has a Name

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.

Winter Baby Boom For Zoo Knoxville!

Zoo Knoxville had two happy surprises for the holidays - the births of both an endangered mountain zebra and a baby giraffe! The zoo had just welcomed a silvered leaf langur infant on November 30th as well.

The Zebra foal was born December 23rd to parents Lydia and Die Toekoms, and is the first mountain zebra to be born in Knoxville. The baby is nursing and healthy. The foal’s gender is yet to be determined as zoo staff are giving Lydia and the baby time to bond.


Zoo Knoxville is one of only 18 zoos in the country who work with this species as part of the Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra Species Survival Plan, a collaboration of zoos accredited by The Association of Zoos and Aquariums to save them from extinction. Native to southwest Africa, mountain zebras are vulnerable to extinction due to habitat loss due to farming and livestock production. It is estimated that only 8,300 remain in the wild.

On the following day, Christmas Eve, Frances the giraffe gave birth to a healthy baby boy.

Frances and her new calf are being given time to bond in the barn with the zoo’s other female Lucille and father Jumbe. The team of caretakers will be monitoring the calf closely to make sure it is getting enough nourishment and gaining strength.

When staff is confident Frances and the calf are ready, they will begin giving them access to controlled space outside when temperatures are warm enough for the baby to be out safely.
This is the second giraffe birth at Zoo Knoxville in 18 years. This is also the second offspring for Frances and Jumbe. The two were paired on the recommendation of the Giraffe Species Survival Plan, a collaboration of zoos accredited by The Association of Zoos and Aquariums working to save giraffes from extinction.

The population of wild giraffes has declined dramatically over the last few years, and now there are fewer than 100,000 giraffe left in Africa. They are threatened by habitat loss, competition with growing human populations and being hunted for bushmeat. With a recent 40% decrease in their populations, giraffe are now critically endangered. This calf will help ensure a healthy giraffe population for the future conservation of his species. 

Knoxville’s Langur troop has a bright orange baby as its newest member! The infant was born on November 30 to parents Lucy and Walter, and is the second langur baby to be born in Knoxville since the zoo began working with the species in 2017.

The infant is healthy and nursing and being closely monitored to ensure it continues to thrive. Langur babies will keep their striking coloring for three to six months, then begin to transition to darker fur like the other members of their group. It has not been determined if the yet-to-be-named infant is a boy or a girl.

The zoo’s family of silvered leaf langurs, made up of males Walter and Opie, and females Teagan, Melody, and Lucy, will all help care for the infant, a social practice called allomothering. The baby will be on public view in the Langur Landing indoor viewing room in a few weeks.

Zoo Knoxville is part of the Silvered Leaf Langur Species Survival Plan, (SSP), which is a collaborative national conservation program in U.S. zoos accredited by by The Association of Zoos and Aquariums. 

Zebra foal a late spring arrival at Dubbo Zoo

Keepers at Taronga Western Plains Zoo were delighted to arrive at work on 15 November 2020 to find a male Zebra foal had safely arrived overnight.

The colt is the seventh foal for mum Kioni, who is a very experienced mother and was sired by Bwana, who was transferred to Taronga Zoo, Sydney earlier this year.

The foal has been named Obi by his keepers, meaning heart in the Igbo language of Nigeria.

Zebra foal_4
Zebra foal_4

“Both mum and her foal are doing extremely well. Obi is very stable on his feet and moving around the paddock alongside Kioni,” said Keeper Carolene Magner.

Kioni is a very natural maternal dam and is quite protective, which is important to ensure the foal stays close by for feeding and safety, to prevent any misadventure from other larger herd members.

“The foal is not venturing too far from mum’s side but that is very normal as Kioni is quite protective and keeping the other herd members at a safe distance. The other females in the group are very interested in the new foal but Kioni is ensuring he stays close by her side at present,” said Carolene.

“We are very happy with how he is progressing over his first week and look forward to watching him grow and develop, and eventually interacting with the other herd members,” said Carolene.

“Mornings are a great time to see Obi as he is most active then, and like most newborns will have a burst of energy and then take a nap.”

Zebra have a gestation period of 12 – 13 months. Taronga Western Plains Zoo is home to 11 Zebra across three groups at present. A breeding herd with new addition Obi and five other females, a small bachelor group next to the Giraffe exhibit and another group on the African Savannah.

There are three subspecies of Zebra in the wild – Plains Zebra, Grevy’s Zebra and Mountain Zebra. The Plains Zebra sub species which Taronga Western Plains Zoo holds is classified as near threatened. The wild population is declining due to competition with livestock for natural resources, hunting for meat and hide as well as the impacts of drought in some range states.

Taronga Western Plains Zoo’s Beads for Wildlife program helps to support the conservation of Zebra in Northern Kenya, through a partnership with Biliqo-Bulesa Conservancy, a branch of the Northern Rangelands Trust (NRT), selling beadwork made by over 600 women in Northern Kenya. With every bead work product sold in the Zoo Shop it is helping to provide an alternate income to livestock for these communities, which would compete with wildlife for natural resources such as water and vegetation in this region. Put simply, more beads sold = less livestock = more wildlife.

Baby Zebra Meets Giraffes, Rhinos, and More!

Yesterday morning a newborn Grant’s Zebra was born in the stables of the Safari at Burgers’ Zoo. Instinctively, the newborn baby stood up almost immediately to take its first wobbly steps. The foal was immediately taken outside with the family the same day. The mother helped by gently pushing her baby with her head in the right direction. The foal is most likely a female.

Already on its first day of life, the youngster is allowed to enter the large savannah plains, where the newborn zebra cautiously encounters the other inhabitants: giraffes, rhinos and various antelope species, such as wildebeests, and waterbucks. Its mother is very vigilant and protects the baby. Although many people think of zebras as similar in tmperment to horses, they are really wild animals that can kick and bite!

Burgers’ Zoo is home to a herd of Grant’s zebras numbering sixteen individuals. Burgers' Zoo is very successful with the breeding of Grant’s zebras. On average, four to five young are born each year, depending on the number of adult mares living in the herd. This newborn is the third zebra foal of the year. Two foals have already been born this year.

Marwell Park Welcomes Two Zebra Foals Within Days of Each Other


Marwell Wildlife is celebrating the birth of two Hartmann’s mountain zebra foals. The Hartmann’s zebra is Vulnerable, and Marwell is one of the few UK zoos to breed the species. Marwell also manages the International Studbook and the European Ex situ Programme (EEP) for the species which are mainly found in Namibia but also Angola and South Africa. The first was born to Dayimani and Davu and the second was born to Dorotka and Davu. The wild Hartmann’s mountain zebra population suffered a dramatic loss in the early 1980s due to extreme droughts. While the species has recovered to more than 30,000 individuals since then an event similar to the one in the 1980s is increasingly likely under climate change. This could wipe out more than 30 per cent of the wild population making the zoo populations an important back up for the conservation of the species.




Endangered Grevy’s Zebra Born at Lincoln Park Zoo


Foal Born on August 14 Is a Female; Continues to Surpass Milestones

Chicago (August 18, 2020) – Lincoln Park Zoo is excited to announce the arrival of a striped addition this summer. On August 14, 13-year-old Adia, a Grevy’s zebra, gave birth to a healthy foal after a gestation period lasting more than a year.



The newborn foal has yet to be named. Her stripes are reddish-brown and will gradually turn black. The youngster will continue to nurse for about 275 days. Newborn zebra foals can walk after 20 minutes and run after just an hour—a critical survival adaptation in the wild for this endangered grazing prey species.

“It’s hard not to smile when seeing this energetic foal,” said Curator Dan Boehm. “Not only is the zebra foal a joy to visit, but its birth is significant for this endangered species.”

Adia was recommended to breed with 9-year-old Wester as part of the Grevy’s Zebra Species Survival Plan® (SSP), a collaborative population management effort among Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) institutions. This is Adia’s fourth offspring, and her second offspring with sire Wester.

The foal joins three other zebras at the Camel & Zebra area. Grevy’s zebras—named by a French naturalist after the fourth president of France—are the largest of the three zebra species. They are also the world’s largest wild equine, inhabiting semi-arid grasslands in northern Kenya and southern Ethiopia.

This species is endangered in the wild due to hunting and habitat loss.

Zebra Foal Is LA Zoo's First In 20 Years

1 Grevy's Zebra Foal and Mom  Jamila  Photo by Jamie Pham

On April 2, the Los Angeles Zoo welcomed its first Zebra foal in more than 20 years. The unnamed female Grévy’s Zebra was born to parents Khalfani and Jamila as part of a breeding program designed to preserve this species, which is endangered in the wild.

9 Grevy's Zebra Foal  Photo by Jamie Pham
9 Grevy's Zebra Foal  Photo by Jamie PhamPhoto Credit: Jamie Pham   
Video Credit: Jeff Lee

“Grévy's Zebras are the largest and most threatened of the three zebra species,” said Alisa Behar, curator of mammals at the Los Angeles Zoo. “When this herd of zebras came to us a few years ago as part of a species survival plan, it was with the hope that they would get along and produce offspring. We are thrilled with the arrival of this female foal.”

Zebra foals are up and walking within just 20 minutes of birth, and they remain close to their mothers for the first weeks of life. During this important bonding period, mother and foal become familiar with each other’s scent and stripe patterns. As the zebra herd moves across the African plains, the foal must keep up with its mother as she finds food and water. Foals nurse for about six months and remain with the herd until they are sexually mature at two to three years old.

Grévy’s Zebras are the largest of the three Zebra species and the largest of all wild equids. Male Grévy’s Zebras can weigh up to 990 pounds and stand nearly five feet tall. They have narrower, more closely-spaced stripes than other Zebras. They inhabit dry grasslands in southern Ethiopia and northern Kenya.  

The L.A. Zoo has participated in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan® (SSP) for Grévy’s Zebra since the 1980s. This program seeks to maximize genetic diversity in the zoo-dwelling population of rare animals. Grévy’s Zebras are listed as Endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature due to habitat destruction, reduced access to watering holes, and competition with livestock.

See more photos of the foal below.

Continue reading "Zebra Foal Is LA Zoo's First In 20 Years" »

Eleven New Ungulate Calves at Saint Louis Zoo

1_Speke's gazelle_Antilles_Saint Louis Zoo_web

Over a 10-week period, from November 20, 2018, through January 30, 2019, eleven calves from six different ungulate species were born at the Saint Louis Zoo!

The new calves— three Speke’s Gazelles, two Addaxes, a Soemmerring’s Gazelle, a Grevy’s Zebra, two Lesser Kudus and two Lowland Nyalas — are healthy and have been bonding with their mothers behind the scenes at Red Rocks.

New zebra foal, Nova, and her mom can be seen in their habitat, weather permitting.

2_Speke's gazelle_Cranberry_Saint Louis Zoo_web

3_Speke's gazelle_Bravo_Saint Louis Zoo_web

4_Addax_Anubis_Saint Louis Zoo_webPhoto Credits: Saint Louis Zoo /Speke’s Gazelle Calves (Images 1-3), Addax Calves (4-5), Soemmerring’s Gazelle (6), Grevy’s Zebra foal (7), Lesser Kudu calves (8-9), Lowland Nyala calves (10-11)

These important births were recommended by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums Species Survival Plans (SSP), which are responsible for maintaining genetically healthy populations of these ungulate species in North American zoos.

Five of these SSPs are coordinated by Zoo staff. The Saint Louis Zoo’s WildCare Institute Center for Conservation in the Horn of Africa and Saharan Wildlife Recovery Center supports conservation of unique species in Africa.

More great pics below the fold!

Continue reading "Eleven New Ungulate Calves at Saint Louis Zoo" »