Discussion in 'New Zealand' started by Zoofan15, 23 Feb 2019.
I was at the zoo today. The new male is so tiny!
Sunny was born 01/11/2017; so at 18 months old, was actually on the older side of imports for a species commonly shipped to and from New Zealand’s zoos at around 9-15 months. Hopefully this means we won’t be waiting too long for him to sire a calf with Zuri (2015). Maybe another 18 months of growing + 15 months gestation = late 2021.
Female capybara, ‘Iapa’ has given birth to two baby capybara (0:2).
A sad day for New Zealand’s big cats...
‘Djembe’ the 17 year old lioness has been put to sleep.
Djembe the Lioness passes away
Sad news indeed, but what a great age. The three sisters were very close and no doubt Djane and Zhara will take comfort from each other’s company. I imagine if one of the remaining lionesses has to be euthanised for medical reasons; the other would be euthanised on humane grounds, as has been done in a few cases in our region’s zoos with social species.
From an email newsletter: two male Squirrel Monkeys have arrived "from France", and also a non-releasable Little Blue Penguin has been added to the birds already at the zoo.
Near miss incident at Wellington Zoo involving lionesses
A Wellington Zoo keeper is being hailed a hero after a series of institutional failures led to colleagues working with three agitated lionesses being in a barely secured area nearby.
More details of the August 2018 near-miss have now come to light, showing Zoo chief executive Karen Fifield believed it could have been "the worst zoo incident in New Zealand" while a colleague reckoned it could have been the worst in the world.
Keepers were working to move male lions Zulu and Malik to the Auckland zoo. Lionesses Djane, Zahra and Djembe were in a separate area with only a slam-shut catch stopping them getting into the area where staff were working on the sedated male lions.
Latches weren't pushed across, and padlocks were hanging away, an incident investigation - supplied under an official information act request - shows. Logs show the gates were opened at 9.01am and the issue was noticed and fixed at 2pm.
The report showed that standard procedures were not followed, staff were not trained to check locks, trust trumped double-checking, and the unlocked door was walked past a number of times before being noticed. Timely reporting to a manager also failed.
The lionesses were clearly agitated and were growling while cooped in the small cage, the source said. The 120-150kg lionesses could have easily broken the slam-shut catch and got into the area with zoo staff.
Full article here: Wellington lion near-miss could have been 'worst zoo incident in the world'
Djane, Zahra and Djembe were born at Auckland Zoo right, are they related to Kura/Amira?
Djane, Djembe and Zhara were born at Auckland Zoo in August 2001. Their mother was Sheeka (born 1999 at Mogo Zoo), who was no relation to Kura (born 1998 at Indianapolis Zoo) but lived in the same pride as her (they were introduced at Auckland Zoo as cubs). Kura gave birth to four cubs in May 2001 (one of which was Amira). The sires of their litters were brothers, Tonyi and Tombo (born 1996 at the Philadelphia Zoo). Tonyi sired Kura’s litter; Tombo sired Sheeka’s.
Okay and Kura and Amira were the mother's of Zulu and Malik though right?
Yes. Tonyi and Tombo left the zoo in 2003 and two new males were imported from South Africa later that year. One of these (Lazerus) mated with Kura and Amira. Amira gave birth to 1.1 cubs in March 2004 (including Zulu); and Kura gave birth to 2.2 cubs in April 2004 (including Malik). These were the last lion cubs born at Auckland Zoo.
Wellington Zoo has welcomed 2:1 nyala calves.
A single Capybara pup was born to Pepe and Vara 09/10/2019. It is the first litter for Vara.
Wellington Zoo now have a population of 1.6.1 Capybara including adult male Pepe; adult females, Vara and Iapa; Iapa's daughters - Lilly, Amelia, Dí and Luna; and the unnamed pup.
Wellington Zoo has received 0.2 Tasmanian Devils (‘Cassia’and ‘Clove’) from the Tasmanian Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment. They have joined the zoo’s resident female, ‘Dash’ and arrived late September.
Devil duo arrive just in time for Halloween
Instead of New Zealand zoos receiving post reproductive Tasmanian devils; wouldn’t it be more viable to establish a breeding population amongst New Zealand zoos?
Aside from the obvious that new imports wouldn’t be needed every three to four years; isn’t there supposed to be a big emphasis on establishing isolated ‘insurance populations’ within (Australian) zoos in case of a mass outbreak of the facial tumour disease? You don’t get much more isolated than a different country...
I get that the role the Tasmanian devils in NZ zoos play is to free up space in Australian zoos; but surely there are many small scale wildlife parks in Australia (with little more to boast than a couple of kangaroos), that’d be honoured to receive a surplus devil and could perform the same function.
A male Nyala has sadly died after being spooked by fireworks:
Wellington Zoo animal dies after being 'spooked' by fireworks
Wellington Zoo is calling for an end to private fireworks after a spooked animal died on Guy Fawkes night.
The male Nyala - a type of antelope native to southern Africa - was found dead at the Zoo on Wednesday morning.
General manager of animal care and science Daniel Warsaw said they believe the Nyala got spooked from fireworks and ran into a fence.
""What we've found on the post-mortem was that his death was caused by high levels of stress."
Warsaw said they believe fireworks and a small scrub fire close to the zoo on Guy Fawkes caused his death.
Some bits and pieces from a visit to the zoo this morning:
The tanks for Shingleback Skink (in the old elephant house) and Otago Skinks (in the NZ section) are both completely empty - the former has a sign saying something like "Animals Coming Soon", while the latter has a sign saying that the lizards are being introduced to a new arrival. However both tanks are actually empty empty, as in no substrate or anything else. I haven't seen a Shingleback at the zoo since around the middle of the year, so I don't think they have them at all any more.
However, in a surprise twist, the "tool shed" in the Australian walk-through area now has a lizard in it! The exhibit was originally for an Eastern Water Dragon but has been unoccupied with an "Animals Back Soon" sign for over a year now. Today there was a Blue-tongued Skink in there.
The enclosure for Capybaras at the entrance has an "Animals Back Soon" sign, as it has done for a while. I think the Capybaras which were in here are the five males which were exported to Taronga a couple of months ago. I'd guess it will remain empty until the current crop of Capybara babies are old enough to be split off here.
The old baboon enclosure is still just sitting there with a "Planning In Progress" sign on it (it is almost a year since the last of the baoons were euthanised).
The Crested Porcupines appear to no longer be on display (their "burrows" in the Meerkat enclosure were shut up and the windows mirrored).
I think the Brolga is now dead because I haven't seen him for ages and his signage has since been removed.
And finally for the "bad" news, the steep zigzag pathway running from the Servals down to the Sun Bear is blocked at both ends with what looks like (semi?)-permanent fencing. Not sure what is happening there. It's unlikely to be animal-related because of the steepness of that section. It makes moving around the zoo a bit of a pain though because you have to back-track all the way to the old elephant house.
On the better news front, I saw the two new Tasmanian Devils which arrived recently from Australia.
The most interesting item of the day is that the Bolivian Squirrel Monkey cage is undergoing some serious redevelopment into a walk-through enclosure. I didn't have my camera with me so no photos of it, but I'll add a older photo below from the gallery so it is easy to envision. If you look at each vertical section of the cage, the two sections on the left were for tamarins (Cottontops and Golden Lions would swap back and forth), while the four sections on the right - only three sections are visible in the photo - was the cage for the Squirrel Monkeys. Now the left-most vertical section(s) has been removed as the entrance path for the enclosure, with visitor access at the back-left of the enclosure. Along the rear of the enclosure is a raised deck with a separate cage behind - I'm guessing for either parrots or tamarins. A set of wooden steps come down from the deck into the main enclosure which now has several pathways inside. I'm assuming this will be a walk-through for the Squirrel Monkeys. It's a good-sized cage for the monkeys, although I feel it isn't quite large enough to be comfortable as a walk-through, especially on any busy days, but I guess I can't judge that properly until it is actually finished and accessible. The centre "vertical section" (either the one which is cut half-off on the right side of the photo below, or the one to the left of it; not sure which) has been entirely removed, presumably for an extra entry or exit door. Probably it will be a one-way walk-through to ease congestion.
The front section of the enclosure which had been removed was back in place when I visited today. I guess it had simply been removed to allow access for workmen during the renovations, rather than being for the placement of a visitor access door as I assumed. Also the "paths" within the enclosure have been covered over in bark chips, so although they still form "paths" they are not much distinct from the rest of the landscaping.
So my current guess is that the main part of the enclosure will not be a walk-through after all. It could be that the rear deck which has been built will be for visitors to be inside the cage (but not for the whole cage to be a walk-through), but it could also be that access to the cage will only be for "encounters" and it won't be a general walk-through at all.
My idea that the enclosure was being turned into a walk-through was based on a sign which the zoo had up next to this cage (seen here: sign for upcoming walk-through - ZooChat), but when I went to look for it in the gallery I discovered that I had taken it way back in 2011, before the Squirrel Monkeys had even been imported (the idea for the walk-through at the time was for Cottontop Tamarins; and apparently I have no concept of time). So maybe it will be or maybe it won't be...
Wellington Zoo has announced that their group of 13 Bolivian Squirrel Monkeys are back on display.
Their enclosure received new indoor dens and more complex climbing opportunities and structures (ropes etc). There is no mention of new viewing areas for visitors or that it is now a walk-through enclosure.
Whilst the monkeys were off-display the two new males were successfully integrated into the group.
That balcony walkway thing just smacks of visitor access. It runs along the rear of the cage, and is a really weird structural feature if it isn't for people to be walking on (the video is taken from the new door which has been put in at the back left of the cage, approached through what used to be the tamarin cage). I still think it'll be for "encounters".
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