Looking back at the babies of 2016
2016's beautiful new arrivals
As the Park comes to the end of this year's 'baby boom', we take a look at some of the new faces we welcomed this year and find out how they've been getting on.
Humboldt penguin chicks
Back in March, the Animal Encounters team down in Penguin World welcomed four new little faces to the colony. Well, one was not quite so little as keepers joked that penguin Goose was actually a stray goose egg due to his size! You can read more about that here.
Penguin chicks Goose, Mumble, Avocado and Chilli have now all gone through their first moult, which means they are now waterproof! The four youngsters can be easily identified as they are much more playful than the adults - playing with sticks, messing around on the bank and generally getting up to mischief.
The unique spot pattern that will help keepers individually identify each of them has now appeared although they won't lose their grey plumage until next year.
Asian Short Clawed otter pups
The otter pups are now five months old and are fully weaned from their mother, Kelani. The five youngsters can be seen throughout the winter, swimming in their pool, hiding amongst the rocks and playing with each other within the enclosure.
Keepers will also begin to train the pups so that they are able to enter to clean their enclosure regularly and be able to weigh all of the otters safely and with ease. It's hoped in a couple of months that the waterfall in their enclosure will be back up and running, meaning visitors will be able to see them having a splash from early next year.
Read more about the otter pups here.
The team in Monkey Business within the Foot Safari are slightly later than the rest of the Park when it comes to welcoming their new annual arrivals. Autumn tends to see the first squirrel monkey baby born and already, two new babies have been born in this enclosure.
Experienced mum, Tye, gave birth to a healthy newborn earlier this month, quickly followed by female Ringo's new baby. Monkey World is a walk-through animal enclosure so visitors may be able to see these new faces up close on their next visit.
North American black bears
Keepers knew they were about to welcome at least one bear cub earlier this spring as they’d heard calls to mum coming from inside a large den in an oak tree, but mother bear, four-year old Phoenix had a delightful surprise for keepers - as the little ones appeared - in triplicate!
The three little bears can be seen in their side pen, alongside their mum, although they will begin spending more time away from view as the weather gets colder.
Read more here.
Brindled wildebeest & Eland calves
This pair were born earlier in the summer and since, have become the most unlikely and best of friends. In the wild these species would not naturally mix with one another, although keepers started noticing the wildebeest Queeny, spending time with Queensley, the eland, very early on.
Now, the pair love to have a laze together during the day out on the African Reserve and the other eland herd members seem to have no problem with the new member of their group!
Read more here.