Special zebra foal, Grevy’s zebra has been born in the African panorama of Sosto Zoo. Delivery was smooth without complication, no assistance of either the keepers or the vets was needed. The now 9 days old calf stood on its legs right after birth and was able to walk even at its age of 1 hour. Lucy will be nursed until she will be 7 months old but will have a taste of its solid menu consisting mainly of fibrous fodder after its first month. It is apparent that the calf enjoys the outside enclosure where it plays and runs with great vigour. She will reach maturity for the age of four years when she is likely to be sent to another European zoo by the species coordinator.
Grevy’s zebra is exhibited in our zoo since 2008 when Füles, the male arrived from Germany within the framework of the European Endangered Species Programmes. His females arrived to the African exhibit system in 2013 from Polish and Czech zoos.
Grevy’s zebra is the largest among zebra species and it is the largest wild equid on Earth. There are only 2000 specimens living in their natural habitat and are endangered by habitat loss and expansion of grazing. They can be found only on dry grasslands of Southern Ethiopia and Kenya in decreasing number. In contrary to other zebras, this species does not form stable herds. Specimens of different sexes get together by chance.
This species can be easily distinguished from the others – the plain and the mountain zebras – because Grevy’s belly is white and the stripe on its back along the spine is surrounded by white. Its ears are also much bigger. The species was named after Jules Grévy, French president of the 19th century to whom such an animal was given by Abyssinia.
Sóstó Zoo is a real curiosity for the fans of zebra species, because beside the Grevy’s zebras, 2 subspecies of the plain zebra, namely the Grant and Chapman zebras can be seen in another enclosure.
The born of this baby animal is a real curiosity because there were only 19 of these animals born in all of the zoos of the world last year.
The calf which is 2 weeks old and 11,4 kg just had a medical examination today where its gender had been determined.
This is the third time that a specimen of this species was born in Sóstó Zoo. Its sister was born in 2011 and than its brother in 2015. The brother’s weight has risen with 25 decagrams per day, so a similar growth is expected in the case of this present baby.
Broutille, the 18 years old mother is very attentive, she nurses her baby 4-5 times a day. The calf, who was born after a 190 days long pregnancy, will eat solid food when getting to the age of 2-4 months. It will consist of hay, vegetables and fruits.
While its relative, the common hippopotamus was known already in ancient times, pygmy hippopotamus is one of the latest discovered species among big mammals. It happened only at the end of the 19 century. The reason for that is being shy animals with a hiding lifestyle. They live in the depth of the West-African tropical forests.
There are less than 2000 specimen living in the wild currently. In addition, they are endangered because of habitat loss and hunting.
The European Association of Zoos and Aquaria breeds them in the framework of a breeding program. Sóstó Zoo joined this program in 2006. Currently, there are the father who arrived from Denmark, the French mother and the two weeks old offspring living in the zoo. (The older calves have been moved already to other zoos.)
The gender of the calf was determined today, it is a male. Since there are much more female pygmy hippos born than males, we are more glad to have this male calf in this special case