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New arrivals at Cotswold Wildlife Park!

New arrivals at Cotswold Wildlife Park

Born out of the blue!

Cotswold Wildlife Park is delighted, if not a bit surprised,  to announce a few unexpected births from one of the largest and one of smallest mammals at the Park; the Critically Endangered bactrian camels and the diminutive prairie dogs.

Keepers were shocked at bactrian camel Tinker’s new offspring as they didn’t even know she was pregnant! Being a new arrival herself, it was thought highly unlikely that she would have successfully mated with sire Chewy so soon. In fact, Chewy has been quite busy as two more baby camels were born  a few days later! Friday gave birth to Saturday on Saturday 6th June (hence the new name!) and mum Cleo gave birth to Millie on Sunday 5th June,  much to the delight of visitors and the birth attracted quite a crowd. Tinker seems to be an excellent first time mum to Rita (despite looking very confused at first!) and all three baby bactrians are thriving. With Father’s Day around the corner, Chewy is definitely a contender for our best dad award.
Another surprise to keepers were the birth of ten baby prarie dogs. Living extensively underground in ‘towns’  it is near impossible for keepers to know what is going on ‘below the scenes’.  It was a very pleasant surprise when the first baby appeared out of the burrow. So far, ten prairie dogs (and counting!) have been born, the newest appearing on 14th June.

This breeding season has been a remarkable one for the Park. In the last month alone there have been over one hundred births, including one of the world’s rarest pig species, Visayan warty pigs. Curator, Jamie Craig, said: “We have had a bumper year for births, particularly amongst our large mammals. Three camels and a zebra in a three day period is certainly unusual and a fantastic bonus. Our prarie dog family also suprised us this year, having not bred since their arrival, we were delighted to see a host of tiny faces appearing at the burrow entrances - we have now counted ten youngster as they appear above ground and there may be more!”

Explore Gloucestershire
17 June 2011

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