Prosimians, Parrots and Penguins (of course!)

May 13, 2009 § 3 Comments


 

We have been experiencing thoroughly mixed weather this week, with sunshine one minute, and a heavy downpour the next! However, this hasn’t stopped people visiting the zoo, and it certainly hasn’t stopped our keepers, who have been busy this week looking after this lot!

The gentoo penguin colony has now laid 109 eggs! The eggs are continuing to hatch and we now have 25 gentoo penguin chicks. Penguin keepers have erected a board on the penguin bridge, which they are updating daily to inform visitors of the number of chicks.

 The chicks are growing quickly and some are surprisingly large!

The chicks are growing quickly and some are already surprisingly large!

 Although the youngest hatchlings are still small

Although the youngest hatchlings are still small and difficult to spot!

 The oldest two siblings of the colony crash out – it’s a hard life!

The oldest two siblings of the colony crash out – it’s a hard life!

We are also pleased to announce the birth of a Southern Lesser Galago (otherwise known as bush babies) on the 2nd April. This is the first birth for our breeding pair of young adult Galagos, but they seem to be doing very well with it so far! The baby is a male and has been named ‘Bobo’. He can apparently be seen ‘bouncing around’ his enclosure quite a lot, and is doing very well! As these animals are nocturnal, their keepers have kept their enclosure dark during the daytime to increase the chances of visitors seeing them out and about. If you are feeling lucky, pop up to the galago’s darkened enclosure above the red river hogs and have a peek in through the partly boarded window.

 Our pair of galagos peer out of their nest box together, perhaps keeping an eye on bouncing Bobo!

Our pair of galagos peer out of their nest box together, perhaps keeping an eye on bouncing Bobo!

We can also announce that a pair of blue-winged macaws (also known as Illiger’s miniature macaws) previously kept off show has been moved into full public view this week. The pair is made up of an 8 yr old female and a 6 yr old male, and can be seen next to the Flamingo enclosure. Blue-winged macaws inhabit forests throughout Brazil and Paraguay and as their names suggest they are brightly coloured and also rather small! Despite this they have a lifespan of 50 to 60 years, making our pair relatively young! Blue-winged macaws can begin breeding from 2 – 4 years old. However, our pair have not bred as of yet. We hope that in the future, they will begin breeding and produce some young.

This species has been classified by the IUCN red list as ‘near threatened’ due to its small population size which is currently undergoing relatively rapid decline. The major threats to this species are habitat loss and trapping for pet trade. This therefore makes breeding this species all the more important.

 Our pair of blue-winged macaws are already looking promisingly ‘loved-up’!

Our pair of blue-winged macaws are already looking promisingly ‘loved-up’!

Last week we announced the arrival of 2 new Chinese goral to the zoo, along with a small herd of white-lipped deer. The new male goral has now been mixed with our young female, ‘Bejing’ in the eastern ‘Whitson woods’ enclosure, while the new female has now been mixed with Bejing’s father in the western ‘Whitson woods’ enclosure. The introductions went very smoothly and the new individuals are settling in well,

The new white-lipped deer are also settling in well, and are still resident in the old camel house, with access to the bottom camel field. Why not pop up to welcome our new arrivals next time you are visiting?

 The large herd of new white-lipped deer get settled in

The large herd of new white-lipped deer get settled in

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§ 3 Responses to Prosimians, Parrots and Penguins (of course!)

  • Susan says:

    We noticed on a previous visit that the lions enclosure was closed to the public, due to a hopeful imminent birth. On our most recent visit the lion house was open again, could you please give an update.
    Thanks

  • rzss says:

    Darren McGarry, Animal Collection Manager for Edinburgh Zoo, said:

    “Our keepers believed that both of our lionesses were pregnant and therefore the lion enclosure was closed off to the public for a period of about two weeks to create a peaceful and private environment for them. During this time, the keepers monitored the lions on a regular basis and they believe that the lions gave birth but unfortunately no cubs survived.

    Our lions successfully bred in 2006, rearing four cubs which have now left to join breeding programmes in other zoo collections. We have no reason to believe that our lions cannot successfully breed again. The area around the lion enclosure has now been reopened to the public.”

  • Simon says:

    Got some fantastic video of the gentoo chicks on 12th May. Also got a little clip of the two rockhopper chicks and the potoroo joey. Every week, in fact every day at the zoo is different.

    As in the wild some young make it, some don’t, sadly that’s a fact of life and I’m sure the keepers and other staff at the zoo will be as sad as any animal lover at a loss. The successes, I’m sure, will always make up for that!

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