With the rain came a new arrival, a Przewalski’s Horse foal born on Wednesday, 01 December. Whilst officially this was the first day of summer, the little filly named ‘Solongo’ meaning ‘rainbow’ in Mongolian, arrived into what has been a wet start to the summer season.
Solongo is a little on the woolly side compared to her parents at the moment, however this will change as she gets older.
Solongo is the first foal for mother Genghis who is being very protective of her offspring making sure she doesn’t venture too far from her side. They have bonded well together and Genghis is showing all the right maternal behaviours.
Solongo is the 35th foal to be born the Zoo’s breeding program since it commenced in 1982. Once she is old enough, Solongo will either join the breeding program here in Dubbo or be transferred to another Zoo to contribute to the zoo-based Przewalski’s Horse population.
Extinct in the wild by 1968, world zoos including Taronga Western Plains helped assemble a herd of 50 of these small, wild horses, in 1995 which was presented to the Mongolian Government to re-establish the species anew in the wild at Takhin Tal in Mongolia.
Tribes people there call the horses ‘Takhi’ and as of 2008 over 325 of the horses were roaming the plains there.