Zoo Atlanta

Toco Toucan Chicks - A ZooBorns First!

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The newest baby birds at Zoo Atlanta may take a little while to grow into their looks. Two Toco Toucan chicks hatched around St. Patrick’s Day – a success for a species that can be difficult to breed in captivity.

The chicks are healthy and thriving in an off-exhibit building, where they are currently being hand-reared by Zoo staff. Toucan chicks have soft beaks, which increases their risk of injury in the first few weeks before they fledge. As a precaution, Zoo Atlanta staff removed the new arrivals from their parents’ nest when the chicks were 3 weeks old.

Native to South America, Toco Toucans are the largest and most recognizable of the toucan species sporting black plumage, white throats and bright orange bills.

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Check out the chicks at just four weeks old below!

Toco-chicks1-Apr-12Photo credits: Zoo Atlanta


Eastern Bongo Baby Adds to Critically Endangered Species

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There's a new Eastern bongo baby at Zoo Atlanta! First-time mother Matilda delivered this newest ambassador for the critically endangered species on December 2. The calf is the first for Matilda and the Father, Tambo. Both parents are 3 years old.

“Naturally, we’re delighted about any birth here at the Zoo, but Matilda’s calf also illustrates the role zoos can play in wildlife conservation,” said Raymond King, President and CEO. “This is a species on the brink of extinction. Sharing the hope and joy of a new baby helps us educate our guests about these majestic animals and the need to preserve them in the wild.”

Known for their deep reddish coats and magnificent curved horns, bongos are the largest of the African antelope species. Largely due to their elusive nature, the animals were the subjects of legends and superstitions prior to their relatively recent discovery by western science in the 20th century.

Believed to number fewer than 500 in the wild in their native Kenya, eastern bongos face extinction as a result of habitat destruction, poaching and hunting for the bushmeat trade. Matilda and Tambo were recommended to breed by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA) Species Survival Plan, which seeks to maintain a self-sustaining, genetically diverse population within North American Zoos and has reintroduced captive-born bongos to eastern Africa.

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Photo Credit: Zoo Atlanta

 

Baby Sister Tiger Makes for a Good Pillow

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Recently confirmed to be one male and one female, the nearly 8-week-old Sumatran Tiger cubs at Zoo Atlanta have been named Sohni (female) and Sanjiv (male).  The cubs’ sexes were determined during a veterinary checkup on August 17.

The monikers were selected by Zoo donor and former Board of Directors member Larry Westbrook, who named the cubs for his grandchildren. Sohni (SOHnee) means “beautiful,” while Sanjiv (SahnJEEV) has a number of meanings, among them “love,” “long life,” and “reviving.”

The newly-named cubs were given brief physical exams on August 17, along with their first vaccinations. Sanjiv weighed 12.25 pounds; his slightly smaller sister weighed 10.84 pounds. Sohni and Sanjiv were then returned to their mother, who continues to provide excellent care in two off-exhibit indoor dens.

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Photo credits: Zoo Atlanta

Dont miss the short video below!

Guests can currently see Sohni and Sanjiv live on camera from the Tiger/Sun Bear Terrace at Zoo Atlanta, as well as on Tiger Cub Cam. Tiger Cub Cam will be available 24/7 on zooatlanta.org until the cubs make their debut in early September.


Beloved Atlanta Zoo Gorilla Gives Birth to Her Second

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Kudzoo, a 17-year-old female western lowland gorilla at Zoo Atlanta, gave birth to an infant in the early morning hours of May 9, 2011. This is the second offspring for Mom Kudzoo and 21-year-old Dad Taz.

Western lowland gorillas live in the rainforests of equatorial Africa. A larger group of western lowland gorillas were discovered in 2007 in northern regions of the Republic of Congo. While these new groups provide new hopes for the future of the species, they remain critically endangered, with their numbers in continual decline because of poaching, habitat destruction, and disease.

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Photo credits: Courtesy of Zoo Atlanta

Zoo Atlanta is home to the nation’s largest collection of gorillas, now with 24 individuals living in distinct social groups. The Zoo is a recognized center of excellence for the care and research of these critically endangered great apes. Since 1988, 19 gorillas have been born at Zoo Atlanta, 17 of whom still live on grounds!

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Remy the Orangutan Finds a Surrogate Mother

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An infant ape who journeyed from Texas to be fostered by one of the nation’s best surrogate mothers is now beginning to explore his outdoor habitat. Remy, a 4-month-old male Sumatran Orangutan from the Fort Worth Zoo, is adjusting well and has been accepted by Madu, a 27-year-old Sumatran Orangutan at Zoo Atlanta. The infant, whose full name is Rembulan Wajah (Rembulan means “moon;” Wajah, “face,” in Indonesian) was born on November 26, 2010. His biological mother became very ill and was unable to care for Remy. Although she has since improved, she remains under close veterinary supervision. The Orangutan Species Survival Plan (SSP) identified Madu as the top candidate for surrogacy, as she has successfully reared two previous foster infants.

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Photo credits: Courtesy of Zoo Atlanta

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Zoo Atlanta's Panda Cub Gets a Name!

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100 days is a long time to wait for a proper name, but today Zoo Atlanta's little Panda cub got a name: "Po!" It's no coincidence that the cub's name might sound familiar to fans of Kung Fu Panda. DreamWorks sponsored the naming of the little cub in exchange for funding Zoo Atlanta's panda conservation efforts. Additionally, DreamWorks will continue to fund efforts at China's Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, a facility we have covered in the past. The cub is now 11lbs and took his first steps a few days ago. See the cubs progress as covered by ZooBorns at birth and four weeks.

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Peaceful Panda Cub Debuts in Atlanta

Giant Panda mom, Lun-Lun, gave birth to a tiny pink cub on November 3rd at Zoo Atlanta. At that time, the cub was hairless and helpless, like all panda cubs at that age. One month later, the cub is hairy but still helpless as we see in this special behind-the-scenes veterinary check-up video below. Heather Baker Roberts, Carnivore Keeper II, gave a detailed update yesterday on the Zoo's panda blog. "The cub is becoming more active each day. When Lun Lun leaves him alone, he wiggles and exercises his muscles. He works one back leg as if to scratch himself or he manages to turn himself around on the floor.

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(continued from above "Most importantly, he can right himself when he ends up on his back.  Just last week, if he accidentally rolled onto his back while Lun Lun was away, he was very unhappy – flailing his legs in the air and squawking loudly until Lun Lun rushed back and picked him up. He was like a stranded tortoise! But now he has developed enough muscle strength to roll himself over onto his stomach fairly quickly when he is supine. I am actually surprised he can roll over at all since his belly is so fat, but I have seen him do it several times in recent days. This is a big step for the little guy!"


First Panda Born in the U.S. in 2010: Zoo Atlanta

Lun Lun, a 13-year-old female Giant Panda at Zoo Atlanta, gave birth to her third cub on November 3, 2010. The cub, born at 5:39 a.m. in a specially-prepared birthing den in the Zoo’s giant panda building, is the only giant panda to be born in the U.S. in 2010. Lun Lun appears to be providing appropriate care for her cub, which is roughly the size of a cell phone. The Animal Management and Veterinary Teams will continue round-the-clock monitoring of mother and cub, and a preliminary veterinary checkup will be performed as soon as staff is able to remove the cub without disrupting maternal care.

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Photo credits: Zoo Atlanta

You can also view Lun Lun and her baby on the Zoo's pandacam.

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First Glimpse of Atlanta's New Gorilla Infant

The great ape whose name has become synonymous with motherhood has a new outlet for her considerable parenting skills. Kuchi, a 25-year-old western lowland gorilla, gave birth to an infant overnight Saturday at Zoo Atlanta. The newborn is the third offspring for Kuchi and 20-year-old silverback Taz, who is also the father of fraternal twins Kali and Kazi, 4.

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Photo Credits: Courtesy of Zoo Atlanta

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