Another rare birth to celebrate at Zoo Wrocław. A baby Golden takin was born.
On March 12th, a female takin was born at Zoo Wrocław. The species is vulnerable to extinction. The conservation breeding of Golden takins is carried out by 11 zoological gardens, including Tokyo and San Diego.
Four young individuals - Xian, Johnny Woo, Won Yu and Zhaoze - form the breeding herd in Wrocław. They came as part of a breeding exchange at the turn of June and July 2017 from three zoological gardens - Liberec, Dresden and Berlin. They live in the enclosure designed especially for them, in the oldest part of the zoo, having Siberian ibexes and milu as their neighbors.
The newborn female keeps close to her mom Zhaoze, always following her footsteps.
- We can see that the relationship between the mother and daughter is great. Zhaoze is a caring mom, and when we come too close, she literally covers the baby with her body - says Anna Rosiak, a keeper from the Wrocław zoo. - For now, the newborn must be at least one month old to be officially put into the animal inventory. By then, she should have a name (we are constantly trying to think one up). We know that it should somehow relate to China where this species comes from, and should start with the letter Z, after the mother.
When the young one reaches sexual maturity, she will go to another zoological garden to strengthen a newly established or existing breeding herd.
Golden takins (Budorcas taxicolor bedfordi) are endemic to Chinese uplands in Shanxi province, where they can be found up to 4 500 m above sea level. They are actually the largest representatives of the group of goats and sheep, which is quite hard to believe just by the look of them. Firstly, they reach up to 2.2 m body length, 1.4 m in height, and may weight even 350 kg. Secondly, they have a "strange" body structure that resembles a cross between a goat, antelope and a bear. Thirdly, their horns are short and set very close together, as if they were one.
The diet of these animals consists of grass, leaves, flowers and also bamboo shoots. They prefer to feed at dawn and dusk.
The population number of takins depends on the availability of food. When there is enough of it, the group can count up to 300 individuals. When the food is scarce, the herd breaks into small groups, up to 35 individuals. It was also observed that these animals move along the Himalayas, using the same, well-trodden paths.
They have quite a lot of natural enemies, such as bears, wolves, dholes and leopards. Takins protect the herd by alerting other members of the group with a characteristic alarm sound. They make their escape by jumping from rock to rock, or they hide well in the bushes, where they lie avoiding the danger.
Takins lifespan is about 18 years in the natural environment.
According to the IUCN status, they belong to Vulnerable species. Deforestation, hunting and fragmentation of habitats are the biggest threat to them.