Adelaide Zoo

Little Giraffe Calf Settling In at Adelaide Zoo

Here’s a Friday warm fuzzy from Adelaide Zoo!

Take a peek at the zoo’s newest resident, a little one-week-old giraffe calf, tucking into his milk bottle from keepers.

The calf was born at Monarto Safari Park to 17-year-old Thula last Thursday, and while initial signs of bonding were promising, unfortunately Thula had not fed the calf within the first 24 hours.

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It’s a… Sumatran Tiger Cubs’ Big Gender Reveal! 

Doting Sumatran Tiger dad, Kembali, has ripped open some meat-filled enrichment to share the genders of his three cubs!

After tearing through the colourful enrichment created by Adelaide Zoo's BEEZA (Behaviour and Environmental Enrichment of Zoo Animals) team, he revealed the cubs’ sexes (see the reveal at the end of this clip).

The cubs were sexed during their first health check last week with Adelaide Zoo’s dedicated keepers and veterinary team.

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Giraffe Calf Arrives At Adelaide Zoo

Adelaide Zoo has a new long-legged arrival! 

Yesterday (January 4th), Monarto Safari Park welcomed its fifth calf within a year to 17-year-old Thula.

While initial signs of bonding between mum and bub were promising, it was apparent this morning that the calf had not been fed by his mum and the decision was made to hand raise the calf at Adelaide Zoo.

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Trio Of Critically Endangered Sumatran Tiger Cubs Born

The first ever critically-endangered Sumatran Tiger cubs to be born at Adelaide Zoo have arrived safe, sound and extremely snuggly in the Year of the Tiger.

“There’s a whole puddle of stripy little legs, arms and tails in the cubbing den at the moment. It’s the best gift ever,” said an elated Elaine Bensted, CE of Zoos SA. 

“This is a significant moment in conservation as the Sumatran Tiger species has less than 400 adults surviving in the wild. 

“Delilah and Kembali’s cubs are vital to ensuring strong genetics in the breeding program and indeed the future of the species.

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Orphaned Puggle Nursed Back To Health

Who can resist a little puggle snuggle on a Friday (or on a Thursday if you’re in the Western Hemisphere!)? Adelaide Zoo would like to introduce you to its newest arrival, Kathari (cut-tree), which means ‘prickle’ in Ngarrindjeri language.

The eight-week-old Short-beaked Echidna was named by Senior Indigenous Conservation Officer, Leon ‘Scornzy’ Dodd.

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Hello there! Little Quokka Joey Debuts At Adelaide Zoo!

A furry little face has popped out to say hello at Adelaide Zoo in Australia!

The Quokka joey made its debut this week, wiggling its nose out from five-year-old Yiray’s pouch.

Quokka joeys live in their mother’s pouch for around five months before making their way out to explore the world.

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Senior Keeper Nature Theatre, Michelle Birkett, said it was very exciting moment for the team to see the little one appear.

“Yiray has definitely been eating for two, she has been getting into all the snacks!” she said.

LOTS MORE PHOTOS BELOW THE FOLD!

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Five Adorable Meerkat Pups Emerge at Adelaide Zoo

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Adelaide Zoo recently announced the birth of five incredibly adorable Meerkat pups!

Born in the early hours of the morning on July 24, the month-old pups are the first offspring born to proud parents, Miney and Swazi.

The new arrivals are an exciting addition to the Adelaide Zoo family as they are the first Meerkats born at the zoo in seven years.

The yet-to-be-sexed youngsters have spent the first few weeks of life in their burrow being looked after by mum and dad, and have just started to venture outside.

Adelaide Zoo Meerkat Keeper, Jenna Hollamby, said, “The pups are absolutely tiny, probably tipping the scales at about 100 grams each.”

Hollamby continued, “The youngsters are still a little unsure of the big new world outside, but with a bit of encouragement from mum and dad they have started to explore their home. Miney and Swazi are doting first-time parents, tending to the pups every need and taking turns at sentry duty guarding their burrow.”

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21125786_1886139321412931_218536139321159402_oPhoto Credits: Adrian Mann (Image 1) / Adelaide Zoo (2) / Gemma Louise Photography (3) / Mark Hamilton Photography (4)

Visitors to Adelaide Zoo will start to see the pups in their habitat in front of the Giraffe for short periods each day, as they grow in confidence and start to explore the outside world.

“The pups are still spending a lot of time inside, but every day, they explore further from their burrow and are becoming more adventurous,” Jenna Hollamby said. “The best time for visitors to try and catch a glimpse of the new family is first thing in the morning or when the sun is shining.”

The pups’ sex will be confirmed during their eight-week check-up, where they will also receive their first vaccinations and an overall health examination.

As a conservation charity, which exists to save species from extinction, Adelaide Zoo is proud to have bred more than 80 Meerkats since 1993. Meerkats (Suricata suricatta) are native to southern Africa and can be found in the Kalahari Desert. They have adapted to living in very harsh conditions and climate, with little water, limited food and many predators.


Adelaide Zoo Receives Early Holiday Gift

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Christmas has come early at Adelaide Zoo with the arrival of a special gift…a critically endangered White-cheeked Gibbon baby! Born in the early hours of December 10, the infant is the fourth offspring of parents Viet and Remus.

The birth is a significant achievement for Adelaide Zoo, as the youngster is one of only four White-cheeked Gibbon infants to be born at the zoo in its 130-year history.

The infant is extremely important to the international breeding program working to save the White-cheeked Gibbon from extinction. With a declining trend in the wild population of at least 80 per cent over the past 45 years, the species is classified as “Critically Endangered” by the IUCN. It is in serious decline in its native Laos, Vietnam and Southern China, due to deforestation and poaching for the wildlife trade.

2_Adelaide Zoo gibbon babyPhoto Credits: Zoos SA/Adrian Mann

Adelaide Zoo Senior Primate Keeper, Jodie Ellen, said Viet and Remus were doting parents, while older sisters Nhu and Tien were fascinated by the new addition. “The baby is absolutely adorable and is looking strong and healthy, clinging tightly to mum, which is important considering they live high up in the tree tops of their island home,” Jodie said.

“Viet and Rhemus are incredibly loving and capable parents and it’s heart-warming to the entire family caring for the little one. Older sisters Nhu and Tien are excited by the new addition to the family and will play a very hands-on role in the upbringing of the new baby,” Jodie added.

The new family spent the first few days relaxing between their night quarters and their leafy island habitat.

White-cheeked Gibbons are born a golden color before gradually turning black. Females turn gold again when they reach maturity at around five years of age while males remain black. The baby’s gender is not yet known and it may be many months before it can be determined.


Baboon Baby Joins Adelaide Zoo Harem

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Adelaide Zoo excitedly welcomed a baby Hamadryas Baboon to their family. Born in the early hours of October 27, the infant is the second offspring born to parents Chappi and Horus.

Soon after the birth, Adelaide Zoo Primate Keeper, Pij Olijnyk, said, “The baby is suckling well and clinging tightly to mum. Both Chappi and Horus are doing a wonderful job looking after their newest family member. The little one is already keeping mum busy, as it becomes aware of its surroundings.”

For now the baby is under the care and protection of mum, Chappi. Once the baby becomes old enough, 2-year-old brother Tomkay will be introduced, and keepers are sure he will be “over the moon” to have a new playmate.

The sex of the baby is yet to be confirmed.

The Zoo reports that the new addition is on public display with the rest of the harem, and zookeepers are continuing to monitor them closely.

2_14993335_1460511157310318_5556772869660905562_nPhoto Credits: Adrian Mann/ Adelaide Zoo

The Hamadryas Baboon (Papio hamadryas) is a species of baboon from the Old World monkey family. It is the northernmost of all the baboons, being native to the Horn of Africa and the southwestern tip of the Arabian Peninsula. These regions provide habitats with the advantage for this species of fewer natural predators than central or southern Africa where other baboons reside. The Hamadryas Baboon was a sacred animal to the ancient Egyptians and appears in various roles in ancient Egyptian religion, hence its alternative name of 'sacred baboon'.

Although they are currently only classified as “Least Concern” by the IUCN, wild populations are under pressure with their habitat being converted into farmland.

The Hamadryas Baboon is omnivorous and is adapted to its relatively dry habitat. During the wet seasons, the baboon feeds on a variety of foods, including: blossoms, seeds, grasses, wild roots, and leaves from acacia trees. During the dry season, the baboons eat leaves. They are also known to eat insects, reptiles and small mammals.

Baboons live in multi-level societies in the wild, with as many as 800 baboons in one area. An adult male dominates his harem with up to 10 females.


Orphaned Kangaroo Raised by Wallaby at Adelaide Zoo

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In a world first for conservation, Adelaide Zoo Keepers and Veterinarians saved the life of an orphaned Goodfellow’s Tree Kangaroo, by utilizing a surrogate wallaby mother. It’s a technique never attempted before with a Tree Kangaroo!

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3_Adelaide Zoo Tree Kangaroo March 2015

4_Adelaide Zoo Goodfellows Tree Kangaroo April 2015 Photo © Zoos SA Dave MattnerPhoto Credits: Zoos SA

In November last year, zookeepers arrived early one morning to make a horrible discovery. Overnight, a falling branch had crushed the zoo’s three-year-old female Tree Kangaroo, orphaning a five-week-old joey.

Acting on pure adrenalin, zookeepers made the decision to try and save the tiny joey. Due to the young age of the joey, hand rearing was not possible, which meant the only option available was to try and ‘cross-foster’ the joey into the pouch of a surrogate wallaby mother.

‘Cross-fostering’, a special breeding technique that Adelaide Zoo began pioneering in the 1990s, involves the transfer of endangered joeys to the pouch of a surrogate mother of a different wallaby species. This accelerates the breeding cycle of the original wallaby, allowing the female to increase its reproduction rate up to six or eight times in some species. This means Adelaide Zoo can build the captive population of an endangered species much more quickly.

Adelaide Zoo Veterinarian, Dr. David McLelland, says cross fostering has never been attempted on a Tree Kangaroo until that fateful morning. “We’ve had great success over the years’ cross-fostering between wallaby species, but the specialized breeding technique has never been used on a Tree Kangaroo,” David said.

“Not only are tree kangaroos distant relatives of wallabies, they also have many behavioral and physical differences. We had no idea if the Yellow-Foot Rock-Wallaby would accept the Tree Kangaroo joey, but if we wanted to save the joey we had to try our luck.”

The cross-foster procedure, to get the Tree Kangaroo joey to latch on to the new teat, ran smoothly and an anxious couple of days followed as zoo keepers closely monitored the wallaby to determine if the attempt was successful.

Adelaide Zoo Team Leader of Natives, Gayl Males, says tiny ripples of movement over the following days confirmed the joey was alive and thriving, tucked carefully away in its surrogate mother’s pouch.

“We were so excited when we confirmed the joey had made it past the first critical 24 hour period. We were uncertain as to whether the joey was going to be accepted. This joey was completely different from other joeys in body shape and behavior. It certainly wriggled around more than a wallaby joey!” Gayl said.

“The joey, which we named Makaia, first popped its head out of the pouch around the end of January. It was certainly a sight to see a Tree Kangaroo joey, with its reddish-tan fur, bright blue eyes and long claws riding around in a wallaby!”

“He stayed with his wallaby mum for about three and half months until I took over caring for him and in effect became his third mum. He’s certainly a cheeky little fellow and loves running amok, testing the boundaries, using my home as his personal playground, climbing on everything, pulling toilet paper off the rolls, but he also loves quiet time cuddling with my husband in the evening while we watch TV.”

“He truly is a special little guy and I am so pleased that Adelaide Zoo has the staff and expertise to successfully perform this world first cross-foster. Makaia is the result of all our hard work; we can’t wait to share his amazing story with the world!”

Makaia spends the day at the zoo and goes home with Gayl over evenings and on her days off. He will continue to be cared for full-time until he no longer requires overnight feeds and will be weaned at around 15-18 months old.

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