Rare antelope was born in the enclosure of the African exhibit of Sóstó Zoo. The small calf was born yesterday and a few hours later it was already standing on its own legs.
The gemsbok (Oryx gazella) breeding pair living in the park since 2009 is really successful in reproduction since a calf was already born in 2013. Now a healthy offspring was born again after 8,5 months of pregnancy. For today, 4 gemsboks are living in the Tarzan trail of Sóstó Zoo which is the only zoo in Hungary exhibiting this rare animal species.
The gemsbok is native to South-Africa and it is the largest among Oryx species. The bull’s weight can be even 240 kilograms. Their main characteristic is the black marking on their white face. This is becoming more and more apparent for the small calf also who will have the same design as the adults for the age of 6 months. At present, its fur is yet in sand colour which helps camouflage. In its first few weeks, the calf is hidden and cared for very attentively by its mother who nurses it every day.
Gemsboks live in migrating herds on huge grassland areas. They feed on grasses, shrubs and forbs but are fond of tubers as well.
They can find the smallest water source by smell, dig juicy roots from the soil or forage for soil water in dry riverbeds. Since their food has a low nutrient value, they have to graze whole day. Horns of the male are thicker but shorter than of the females. Male’s horns are 100 centimetres long while of the females can be even 120 centimetres. The mothers use their horn to protect their calves while the bulls use them for fight with each other.
Their survival is threatened because their magnificent horns and coat which are desired by trophy hunters.
Big surprises are waiting for our visitors this year, because it is already 20 years, that Sóstó Zoo has opened its gates. On this occasion, visitors are welcomed with many interesting programs and spectaculars.
The attraction of March, which is also the sensation of the year 2016 is the Andean Adventure exhibit, which displays animals of South-America and the Andes Mountain in an extraordinary way. Close to a 100 individuals of more than 20 species can be observed from high up in the tree crowns by walking along a canopy walkway. The life of rheas, jaguars, capuchin monkeys, frisky brown-nosed coatis and alpacas can be watched while going through the bridges, just as the everyday life of spectacled bears, which is a characteristic species of the Andes. The first newborn baby of this exhibit, the small stripy tapir together with her mum can be looked at from Eastern as well.
Besides this, there are innumerable new attractions, like the Australian enclosure, where today biggest marsupial, the giant red kangaroo and the wild dogs of Australia, namely the dingoes can be seen.
New accommodation facility is also available at our zoo, since Hotel Ózon (www.ozonhotel.hu) has become to be operated by us. This is the second zoo hotel in Hungary besides the Jungle Hotel which is also in the operation of Sóstó Zoo. A newly designed indoor and outdoor environment waits for our guests, while food specialities are to be offered in the hotel’s restaurant which has a cosy garden place suitable for family dinner or lunch just as for all kinds of other events.
In the park of Hotel Ózon, a new playground and a near finished petting zoo can be attended free of charge. Our pleasure would be if guests propose this accommodation possibility to their friends and tourists coming to Nyíregyháza. The renewed rooms and among them the famous Kádár apartment (according to legend it was built especially for him to have a resting place while hunting in the county) afford quality places for relaxation and enjoyment.
In addition to the new attractions, an enormous travel game will be launched at the beginning of May. It will soon be available at the park’s website. There will be raffle every month of the main season where valuable prizes can be gained. The star prize is a special exotic journey which will be rewarded among the participants of the “SóstóZoo Expedition”.
Predecessor of the Sóstó Zoo was the Sóstó Cultural Park founded in 1974 as a recreational park for youths exhibiting some native animals in a small zoo.
The big breakthrough came in 1996 when László Gajdos was nominated as the director of the zoo and Elek, the lion, the first exotic animal arrived at the 30 hectares area of the park. Since than animal curiosities arrive one after another. For today, Sóstó Zoo has become a brand representing quality zoo management so in Hungary just as in Europe.
The few 10000 visitors coming to the park per year 20 years ago will now enter it during a long weekend. Last year, close to 450000 visitors attended the zoo, where more than 5000 animals of 500 species are to be seen and special programs wait for their audience. Sóstó Zoo was Europe’s first zoo in the category of less than 500000 visitors last year. This is an almost unsurpassable achievement. We would like to keep this position in the future or at least remain among the first 5. In 2015, an elephant baby was born in the park which is a great achievement and also appreciation from the professional point of view. This year, another star attraction, a very special animal will arrive at the zoo, but let us keep it as a secret in order to make a big surprise for you.