Keepers at Taronga Western Plains Zoo are excited to announce the birth of a female Zebra foal, in the final days of last year on Tuesday 30 December 2014.
The foal, named Marini, which means ‘fresh, healthy and pretty’ in Swahili, is the first foal for mother Kaya as well as being the first foal to be sired by new stallion, Bwana, who joined the herd in late 2013 from Hamilton Zoo in New Zealand.
“Whilst Kaya is new to motherhood she has observed other females in the herd nurture their offspring and is demonstrating all the right maternal behaviours”, said Zebra Keeper, Carolene Magner.
The Zebra foal has been on exhibit since birth and usually spends most of the day feeding, sleeping and having the occasional burst of energy.
“Marini has been seen frolicking playfully amongst the herd on a few occasions which is a delight for visitors”, said Carolene.
The birth of Marini nicely wrapped up a successful year of breeding at Taronga Western Plains Zoo. Throughout the year keepers have welcomed a number of new arrivals including a Hippo calf, Otter pups, Galapagos Tortoise hatchlings, Giraffe calves and Przewalski’s Horse foal.
“The Zebra herd is expecting the pitter patter of more hooves in the coming months which means Marini will have a companion close to her age to interact and bond with”, said Carolene.
“This birth creates a new genetic bloodline in our herd at the Zoo, which benefits zoo-based populations and supports their counterparts in the wild.”
“The continued breeding success is very exciting and a testament to the high level of animal husbandry expertise the staff at Taronga Western Plains Zoo possess,” said Carolene.