KEEPERS at Longleat have plenty of cause for celebration following a number of births in the famous safari park.
The new arrivals, all of whom arrived within three weeks of each of other, include a scimitar-horned oryx, a Rothschild giraffe calf, a blackbuck and a set of ring-tailed lemur twins.
These births are the latest successes in Longleat’s ongoing breeding programme and conservation efforts. Rothschild’s giraffe are amongst the most endangered species of giraffe in the world, with only 1500 remaining in the wild whilst the scimitar-horned oryx now only survives in captivity.
Keeper Bev Evans said: “We’re delighted to have so many new arrivals in the Safari, especially considering many of these species are endangered in their natural habitats.
“All the babies are doing very well now but it’s wasn’t all smooth sailing. The blackbuck calf was found alone and had to be bottle fed for the first 24 hours but luckily after that the mum’s maternal instincts kicked in and she took over.”
The little ones are now all out and about enjoying the Safari Park and have recently been christened by their keepers. The oryx calf, who was the first of the babies to be born, has been named Quiana (pronounced Kee-an-nuh).
While the not so little giraffe – she was already 6ft when she was born – has affectionately been called Lady Emma after Viscountess Weymouth. She isn’t the only new arrival to have a famous namesake! Our Lemur twins are now just over a month old and are now known as Ronnie and Corbett in memory of the much-loved comedian.