Image: © ZSL
A recent baby boom has helped to boost the populations of a number of endangered species at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo in the United Kingdom. New arrivals have joined the Père David deer herd, rock hopper penguin colony and Przewalski’s horse herd.
Head of Zoological Operations Matt Webb explains the new births are incredibly important not just for the Zoo but globally.
“Zookeepers will be kept busy this spring with the birth of 13 Extinct in the Wild Père David fawns, two Endangered Przewalski’s foals, as well as
our newly hatched tiny Northern rockhopper penguin chicks which are also Endangered in the wild.”
“These births are important victories for the European Endangered Species Program (EEP), as we work to ensure these animals, which face a myriad of threats in the wild, have a strong and genetically varied population at conservations zoos like Whipsnade.”
Whipsnade Zoo have been working to ensure a future for the Père David deer. In 2008 this species was listed as extinct in the wild. Guests can meet the 13 fawns which have joined the insurance colony of this species held at Whipsnade in the Passage through Asia habitat.
Alongside the deer live a growing herd of Przewalski’s horse. The latest foal is as yet un named but joins an earlier male foal which has been named Luujin. The new foal is a female and is the first shared offspring for Mum Shargahan and Dad Hulaugu.
At the penguin habitat bird keepers are keeping watch over two northern rockhopper penguin chicks which recently hatched. They are the first chick for their parents who will look after them in the nest for the next month. At hatching the chicks weigh just 81g.
Northern rockhopper penguins are one of the smallest penguin species and are notable due to the yellow crests found on top of their head.
Like their name would suggest the primary way that the northern rockhopper penguin will move through its habitat is by hopping. These impressive leaps can carry them 1.8m (6ft) in a single go.
Image: © ZSL
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