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Congo buffalo in Australia...

Discussion in 'Australia' started by patrick, 14 May 2007.

  1. patrick

    patrick Well-Known Member

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    okay i know, i have a thing for congo buffalo.

    does anyone know what the family tree for the existing 4.1 buffalo in the region is like. i presume they are much inbred originating from dubbo - but would be interested to know.

    and i promise i wont start a potential pro-buffalo movement like i did with the jaguars. ;)
     
  2. ZYBen

    ZYBen Well-Known Member

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    i have never seen these in the flesh, something to do with my parents having to walk to the exhbit when we were at Dubbo.

    From what i have read they are quite easy to manage, i would love to see them continued, even though i would prefer cape buffalo. I think they could be included in many themes of zoo enclosure Savannah to Rainforest.

    But yeah know idea on the family tree
     
  3. patrick

    patrick Well-Known Member

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    you would be forgiven for thinking the congo and cape varieties of african buffalo are entirely different species. different colour, size, shape and horn formation.

    currently, any potential african rainforest immersion exhibit is going to be heavily primate-dominated - we have very few other species that are true african rainforest natives.

    for this reason i'm very pro-congo buffalo particuarly if we are talking hypothetically making a choice between them and their savannah cousins.

    if their are to be any stand-ins in our zoo themes - i would rather see bongo and congo buffalo used to bulk up an open range "african savannah"
    than a bunch of cape buffalo and kudu parked alongside some gorillas..

    in any event i think my facination comes from seeing them in books and docos graze with bongo and gorillas in the wild, and my brain goes into overdrive about what potential they have to create an "african rainforest" in an australian zoo that truly holds up to its title - and is more than just gorillas...
     
  4. ZYBen

    ZYBen Well-Known Member

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    agreed pat,
     
  5. ZooPro

    ZooPro Well-Known Member

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    It's pretty mute really, as all the males are desexed. Dubbo have 3 males and a female. All the males are desxed. Two of the males and the female are full siblings.

    Werribee have a pair - a desexed male imported from Whipsnade to Pearl Coast to Melbourne to Werribee, and a female who is a full sib to the three siblings at Dubbo.

    So to answer your question Patrick, yes, they are pretty related, but there's no chance of breeding from the existing animals.
     
  6. Monty

    Monty Well-Known Member

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    I always seem to be the one to bring up AI.

    It would be a good move to AI the two females. Other overseas zoos would have unrelated males and facilities to colect semen. It would not be that complicated to import semen from several unrelated males which could be used for years into the future. Any female calves could be AI'ed to other bulls and it would be possable to breed a resenable heard from two cows as long as the cows are not to old to produce a couple of femals calves each.
     
  7. Monty

    Monty Well-Known Member

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    I would have thought that if they met the same quarintene measures of cattle their would be no differance.
     
  8. patrick

    patrick Well-Known Member

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    thanks zoopro. i didn't know there was a female at dubbo...

    quite afew years ago, when i was a FOTZ member, i got a newnews that stated melbourne had imported a female from dubbo to "pair" with their male. for years it let me wondering why the animals hadn't yet bred.

    was the unrelated male at melbourne desexed by melbourne when the species was decided to become a phase out? i assume no zoo would bother importing a desexed animal..

    anyhow, thats a shame. i do love the congo buffalo...
     
  9. MARK

    MARK Well-Known Member

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    I am with you Pat, the Congo Buffalo are nice, I saw the herd at Marwell zoo, stunning herd.
     
  10. ZooPro

    ZooPro Well-Known Member

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    It looks like the desexed animal was castrated while it was at Melbourne Zoo, prior to going to Werribee. And you are right, there would be absolutely no reason to import any desexed animals into the coutnry.
     
  11. zookiah63

    zookiah63 Well-Known Member

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    Patrick,

    There was female at Melbourne "quite a few years ago" who died not long after she gave birth to a male calf. so your information was correct.

    The male was hand reared and then displayed with his father for a time.

    This would have been in the very late 90's.

    Melbourne's congo buffalo and the last bison went to Werribee a couple of years ago....which is a real shame. I'm not sure if both the congo buffalo went to Werribee or if they were split up.
     
  12. patrick

    patrick Well-Known Member

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    a shame about the congo buffalo leaving, not so much about the bison.

    both the male and female buffalo went to werribee. last time i was there i saw one through the trees. they are kept off display, which makes little sense to me.

    i think its a real shame that the male was desexed, since he was unrelated to the female and the zoo could have bred up a small family group that would have at least lasted one more generation. that way a couple could be kept for future developments in melbournes african rainforest (which is looking like it will be nothing more than african primates nowdays, with no more pygmy hippo and a lack of availability of bongo) and a few could be kept to spice up one of werribee's numerous savannah exhibits.
     
  13. Ara

    Ara Well-Known Member

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    My ideal african rainforest collection would be:
    Congo buffalo, pygmy hippo, bongo, okapi, gorilla, mandrills, colobus, mangabeys and about 8 different species of guenons (the world's most interesting monkeys.)

    (I know, I know, it ain't going to happen!)
     
  14. Writhedhornbill

    Writhedhornbill Well-Known Member

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    I'll start a new thread on dream african collections Ara. When I get back on my home computer. I have to come off this computer now!!