Following the birth of a Palawan leopard back in November 2018, the zoo welcomed another healthy leopard offspring at the end of February. The six-week-old male leopard is growing up very fast. His current weighs 660 g and just recently got his very first vaccine. In Hungary, members of this subspecies can only be found in Debrecen; and in a total of six zoos around the world. 

Debrecen Zoo along with three other European zoos helped to found a conservation breeding program for Palawan leopards (Prionailurus bengalensis heaneyi), with the aim of establishing a stable and genetically viable zoo population for future reintroduction to the wild. Once the zoo reopens, visitors can meet the cat family in the Small Predator House.

In addition to the Palawan leoparda domestic goat, a little male calf, a  male donkey were recently born, while the Hermann’s and Greek tortoises are just getting ready to come out of brumation. The little baby goat has an excellent appetite and enjoys playing around in the Petting Enclosure. Domesticated roughly at the same time as sheep were, goats (Capra hircus) are some of the most ancient domestic animals, kept primarily for their meat but also for their horns, skin, and hair – one of the world’s softest yarns, mohair, is actually made from the hair of the Angora breed. Goats are quite autonomous for a domestic species, surpassed only by cats, which means they can easily turn feral upon escape. Due to their excellent climbing skills and sense of balance, they are the only ruminant that can climb trees. 

Zoo Debrecen little baby goat 1024x683 - Life Goes on in Debrecen Zoo

The male donkey named Feri likes to play and sunbathe a lot. The Debrecen zoo has been home to the country’s only indigenous donkey breed ever since it first opened and has welcomed several newborn foals over the past couple of years,

Zoo Debrecen White Donkey 1024x765 - Life Goes on in Debrecen Zoo

At the beginning of March, one of the zoo’s Hungarian grey cows gave birth to a healthy offspring after about 9.5 months of gestation. The little male calf has had an excellent appetite from the very beginning. Despite the breed name, Hungarian grey calves are born with a reddish color, turning grey within several months. 

Zoo Debrecen little male calf 1024x682 - Life Goes on in Debrecen Zoo

The Hermann’s and Greek tortoises are just getting ready to come out of brumation, African spurred tortoises that are active all year round, have recently greeted the zoo with two new clutches. On March 24, zookeepers secured a total of 32 golf-ball-sized eggs and started hatching them at 30 °C and a humidity level of 90 percent. Expected to hatch in 100 to 120 days, the baby tortoises will look like miniature versions of their parents and will join their older siblings in our nursery.

In addition to the newborns, two Red-Necked Wallabies have acquired and arrived at the Debrecen Zoo from the Pécs Zoo. Hopefully, the two newcomers will also give birth to healthy offspring in the future. Red-Necked Wallabies are native to coastal forests and bushlands in Tasmania as well as the eastern and southeastern parts of Australia. They are named after the reddish coat on their neck and shoulders. They have large and fairly agile ears that, along with their excellent sense of smell that is very handy since their eyesight is relatively poor. 

Botanical Enrichment in Our Animal Enclosures: The zookeepers and gardeners are responsible for enriching the animal exhibits and their surroundings with appropriate plants and grasses which provide natural shelter for the animals.

Helping You with Digital Distance Learning: On Tuesdays, as a means of helping students with their temporary distance learning, Debrecen Zoo will be posting some fun facts, not only to convey ecological and biological knowledge but also to share behind-the-scenes insights into zoo life. 

Insights Into The Hippo’s: Debrecen Zoo has been home to a Hippopotamus couple Linda and Szigfrid for over 30 years. The sizeable mammals are native to Africa, where they are commonly found in larger lakes and slow-moving rivers. Despite their robust physique and a bad reputation – with claims that more people are attacked annually by hippos than by great white sharks – they feed exclusively on plants and only exhibit aggressive behavior when defending their territory, using huge canine tusks with a maximum length of 70 cm and a weight of up to 4 kilos each.

Even if you can’t go to the zoo now, you can still support it

The “Zoo Lovers Day” celebrates the special relationship between zoos and their visitors on 8th April each year.  The Zoo Debrecen is visited by more and more visitors each year (with the exception of this year). Visiting the zoo is not only providing visitors with fun and memorable experiences but it supports the conservation, education and research efforts of the zoos. 

Unfortunately, lovers of animals and zoos had to miss the celebration due to coronavirus this year and it By purchasing a Sponsor Pass not only helps the zoo greatly in this difficult time but you can visit the zoo in 365 days after reopening. Plus, you will get a free ride on the Zoo’s Miniature Train.