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- The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland
- Edinburgh Zoo
- 134 Corstorphine Road - Edinburgh
- EH12 6TS - United Kingdom
- 0131 334 9171
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Record-breaking baby rhino - Born on Friday 20 October, this latest baby came bouncing into the world weighing a very healthy 42 kilos. Still less than two weeks old, he’s already running around the enclosure under the very watchful eye of his patient mother. Kruger looks on from the paddock next door. In keeping with a long tradition, keepers have named the new rhino Kei, after a white rhino reserve in southern Africa, in this case the Kei white Rhino Reserve on the Uganda/Sudan border.
He’s the twelfth infant to be born to mother, Umfolozi, making her the most prolific white rhino in captivity in the whole of Europe. Rhinos are herd animals, and normally the male will mate only when he is stimulated by the presence of several females, or by competition from other males. In our case, Umfolozi – more affectionately known as Floozie by her keepers - and her partner Kruger, have been affectionate and attached to each other for the past 24 years, ever since they arrived at Edinburgh Zoo in 1976, despite the fact that there’s just the two of them.
Kei will stay with his parents here at Edinburgh Zoo until he’s around sixteen months old, when he will be transferred to another zoo or wildlife park, under the auspices of the European Endangered Species Programme (EEP). Although white rhinos are the least endangered of all remaining rhino species, they still are threatened by poachers, and have to be protected in the wild.
The Zoo was closed at 11.15am this morning, Monday 26 February, after consultation with the Society’s veterinary advisers from the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies in Edinburgh, who have been liaising with the District Veterinary Officer of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAFF). The closure will remain in force at least until and including Monday 5 March, but the situation is being reviewed on a daily basis.
In the meantime, the following precautions are in place: No visitors will be allowed entry to the Zoo. Office and shop staff will continue to work as normal, as they are secured in offices at the main entrance to the Zoo; their cars will be parked in the main car park behind the Posthouse Hotel, and they will not have access to the Zoo. Other essential staff – such as keepers, plumbers etc – will be allowed access through a side gate, where they will have a change of clothes and their footwear disinfected (temporary showers are being erected). Deliveries of essential items such as animal feed will be made to a perimeter gate at the Zoo, and transferred internally. The giftshop and the gallery remain open to the public – free admission.
The Zoo has just over 1,000 animals, including several species which would be vulnerable to infection, including oryx, deer, rodents and two pig relatives: peccaries from South America and babirusa from Indonesia. The Highland Wildlife Park is a unique attraction only ten minutes from Aviemore. Here, you can discover Scotland's wildlife past and present. There's lots going on at the Park over the next few months.
Catch the "Drive in Breakfast" as the warden feeds the many animals in the main reserve. See bison, red deer, highland cattle, Pzrewalski's horses and ancient breeds of sheep! Every day from 1pm onwards (except Saturday) you can join the wardens as they feed the Park's carnivores: wolves, lynx, arctic fox, otters and bear. Every weekend and on Holiday Mondays you can join in the fun at our themed event days. Learn all about the Park's fascinating inhabitants during talks by the wardens and take part in trails, free face-painting and much more.