Starting today guests at Busch Gardens in Tampa, Florida will get to see an unlikely pair – a cheetah cub and a yellow Labrador puppy. The 8-week-old cheetah was taken in last month because his mother was unable to care for him. Last week the animal care team decided on the 16-week-old puppy as a companion. The two will live together in Jambo Junction, a part of the Nairobi area of the park.
The park has opened a poll on their Facebook page to allow voting on what to the name the pair. Voting ends on Monday, April 18.
UPDATE: The cheetah cub has been named Kasi, which is Swahili for “one with speed.”
The animal care team at Busch Gardens in Tampa, Fl is busy these days caring for a four week old cheetah cub. The cheetah was born at another zoo and his mother was unable to care for him. The decision was made to hand-raise him and so far it’s been successful. The little guy now weighs over 2 lbs. and is growing stronger each day.
Once he is big enough he’ll join other cheetahs at the park and will one day play a role breeding program to help increase the population of these endangered animals.
Busch Gardens supports the conservation of and education about cheetahs through the SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund, which has donated nearly $100,000 to cheetah efforts in Africa since 2005 and also helps fund conservation programs for white rhinos, marine animals and many other species around the world.
Two male baby giraffes, born April 8 and April 24, were introduced to the rest of the giraffe herd in the Busch Gardens’ Serengeti Plain habitat. The Serengeti Plain is a 65-acre, naturalistic habitat featuring a diverse population of free-roaming African animals including giraffe, zebra, white rhinoceros, eland antelope and several other species of hoof stock and birds.
Visitors can view the new additions from the Serengeti Express or on a Serengeti Safari, an open-truck tour of the plain.
A pair of red-ruffed lemurs have been born at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay. The two were born on April 21st of this year to Maditra and Bozeny, who have lived at the zoo for 3 years. The babies are still too young to have their gender identified and they have not been given names yet. Once full-grown they will weigh between 8-10 lbs.
Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has welcomed a new giraffe to their zoo family, raising the total number to 15. The calf weighed 147 lbs when born a few days ago.
Guests to the zoo will not yet be able to see the new baby as it is being cared for by its mother in a private section of the zoo. Once zoo staff determines that the baby is growing properly, both baby and mother will join the other giraffes in the Serengeti Plains exhibit where visitors can view the giraffes via safari-style tour or the Skyride.
The zoo is expecting another baby giraffe before summer.
On September 13, Busch Gardens welcomed a baby bongo, an antelope native to the rainforests of Africa. This particular subspecies of bongo, the Eastern Mountain bongo, is considered critically endangered by the IUCN, with an estimated population of only 75-140 individuals alive in the wild.
At Busch Gardens in Tampa Bay there is an unusual pair of best friends. Zoo keepers have noticed that Bea, a three year old giraffe, and Wilma the ostrich have been spending time together. This is unusual because animals have a tendency to prefer the company of their own species.