The third week in July is National Zookeeper Week, so why not visit a zoo, learn about the animals, and support animals in the wild? In honor of this wild week, we’ve collected the latest news from Zoo Atlanta.
Matilda, a 3-year-old eastern bongo will give birth to a calf. She is expected to give birth some time between August and November, and her newborn will be one of the rarest mammals on earth. What does a bongo look like? Bongos have reddish striped coats and curved horns. There are less than 500 left in their natural habitat of Kenya.
Also expecting is Chelsea, a 7-year-old Sumatran tiger. She is expected to give birth to her first litter of cubs in early July. Tigers are well-loved at the zoo and they are also among the most endangered species at Zoo Atlanta. Unfortunately, the tigers are also popular among poachers and there are fewer than 400 left in the wild. Deforestation is causing their habits to dwindle. The zoo is participating in a program to help preserve the tiger habitat in the Sumatra Aceh Forest wildlife corridor.
New Arrivals at Zoo Atlanta
There are some young ones at the zoo, too. Kudzoo, a 17-year old gorilla, and the daughter of Willie B., gave birth to a female gorilla. Willie B. died in 2000, but his legacy lives on. Kudzoo was his oldest off-spring.
Zoo Atlanta’s Pandas
In other news, the pandas at Zoo Atlanta are cuter than ever. The babies are extremely active. You can read about their daily activities straight from the zookeepers on the Zoo Atlanta blog. You can also watch some of the pandas in action on the Zoo Atlanta panda cam. It’s cool to sit in your home and watch them mill about at the zoo, but it’s even more fun to see them in person. Read more about them at Zoo Atlanta.
The giant pandas at the zoo are on loan from China, and Zoo Atlanta pays a yearly fee for them. The money that China receives for the pandas helps to protect pandas in the wild. Zoo Atlanta has contributed more than $10 million to supporting the pandas in China. Specifically, the money builds shelters to protect the pandas, assists in the management of a panda reserve, and supports research. The money is also used to help improve their habitats and monitor the population of pandas in China. Money from admissions to the zoo also aids the pandas, so simply visiting the zoo can help save pandas that are out in their natural habitats.