Dublin Zoo is celebrating as an Eastern Bongo calf was born in the African plains. The female calf was born to parents Kimba and Sam and weighs 20kgs.
 
This birth is particularly significant for Dublin Zoo as the young female provides an important boost to the international breeding programme. Bongos are a highly endangered species and there are only between 75 and 140 eastern bongos left in the wild.
 
It is unlikely that visitors to Dublin Zoo will have spotted the newborn as it is their natural instinct to take cover as a way of protection. She is currently spending most of her time quietly resting, camouflaged in the bushes.
 
Bongos can be recognised by their striking reddish-brown coat, black and white markings, white-yellow stripes and long spiralling horns.
 
Team leader Helen Clarke-Bennett, said, “We are thrilled with the arrival of the bongo calf. There is so few of them left in the wild that successful breeding is essential to the survival of this beautiful species.
 
“The youngster is fit but still quite shy; she has big ears which look out of proportion on her small body but she will grow into them. She is already showing signs of liking spinach which also a favourite snack of both her mother and grandmother.”
 
The team at Dublin Zoo advise visitors to be patient when looking for the baby bongo as she may be difficult to find while she rests in the bushes.
 
Dublin Zoo is open seven days a week, 9.30am to 5pm in February. For further information on Dublin Zoo visit www.dublinzoo.ie

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