Zoo Babies Bring Hope - Gansbaai Daily News

We end off the week with some good news for animals in captivity. The last months saw the birth of two members of Species classified as vulnerable, both born in captivity.

The first up is a Rockhopper Penguin chick that was born roughly a month ago in the Shedd Aquarium. The chick is growing fast and gains about 40 grams a day since its birth. The proud parents of the chick will be looking after it till it can feed and swim by itself. A name still needs to be decided on and the sex of the chick can only be determined roughly a year after its birth.

Rockhopper Penguins are considered vulnerable which according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature is due to disease and warming ocean temperatures.

The second dear holds the title of the World’s Tiniest Deer. Born in the Queens Zoo in May, the baby deer is of the species Pudu. Native to South America these pint-sized deers are very adept at sprinting and jumping, and are also known to bark. There are in fact two species of Pudu, the Southern and the Northern Pudu, of which the baby fawn is the former.

The Pudu is considered an Endangered Species and listed as such in the IUCN Red Data list due to overhunting and habitat loss. 

Finally some progress in breeding wild animals in captivity to preserve their species’. And more importantly, both are protected species that really need the extra additions to their numbers.