14 Deer Fawns a Big Boost for ZSL Whipsnade Zoo Breeding Program

Posted By : The Animal Facts Editorial Team

Date: May 13, 2020 7:05 pm

Photo Credit: ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

ZSL Whipsnade Zoo has celebrated the arrival of not 1 or 2 but an incredible 14 Père David deer fawns. While 14 babies of any animal is exciting these births are even more special as this species of deer is extinct in the wild.

The fawns have been welcomed in to the herd at United Kingdom’s largest zoo. They are housed in a drive through enclosure called Passage through Asia which they share with a herd of camels.

The Père David deer is a species which has been judged by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature as extinct in the wild so these fawns are a welcome addition to the herd.

The herd of Père David deer at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo is part of the European Endangered Species Program (EEP). The EEP is a coordinated effort between zoos and aquariums across Europe to ensure genetic diversity of their herds.This coordinated effort for zoos has led to deer being available for reintroduction in to their native range in an attempt to bring them back from extinction.

Photo Credit: ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

Fourteen births is a great result for this threatened species as their keeper Gracie Gee said, “It’s great to see our herd growing so much this year as they are such an important group – helping to ensure the survival of this species.”

The Père David deer is also known as the Milu and is found in the wetlands of China. They were hunted to extinction during the early 1990s.

ZSL Whipsnade Zoo is currently closed to the public due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. As they are reliant on their visitors to fund both the care of animals at their zoos and their important conservation work abroad they are asking for public support.

Without funding ZSL Whipsnade Zoo are hoping the public will support the care of the almost 4000 animals they look after. If you are in a position to help you can have a look at their public funding appeal here – https://www.zsl.org/donate

Find out more about ZSL Whipsnade Zoo on their website – ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

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