MEET Blackpool Zoo’s latest arrival – a brand new star in stripes!
The East Park Drive attraction is celebrating the birth of a baby zebra – and the little foal’s birth is a rare event.
The male Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra foal is just the fourth of its kind to be born in the UK in the last 10 years, and he is already settling well into life at the resort’s zoo.
Sofie Fawzy, the senior mammal keeper at the zoo, discovered the birth unexpectedly when she came in to work last Monday to find the new addition feeding from his mother.
And the “very active” little foal has wasted no time at all in exploring his new surroundings.
She said: “We are absolutely delighted to have another foal and mother and baby are doing very well.
“It will be fantastic to see another lively young foal running around.
“As it is coming up to Christmas we feel very honoured to have our own special little boy, who was born in a stable.”
The little foal is only the 16th Hartmann’s Mountain zebra in the UK, four of which are at the zoo.
The new foal is the first from his mother, Betty, who is 19 years old.
Jude Rothwell, Marketing and PR Co-ordinator at Blackpool Zoo, said: “The new zebra is doing very well and he’s very lively.
“He’s being kept inside in the warm with his mum, but he loves nothing more than to run up and down the pen.”
The species is in danger of extinction, and there are now just 9,000 of the animals worldwide.
And news of the birth has been welcomed by animal experts, who are keen for the species to thrive.
Tanya Langenhorst, who co-ordinates the European breeding programme for Hartmann’s Mountain Zebras said: “I would like to congratulate the team at Blackpool Zoo on another successful birth.
“This foal is very important and wonderful news for the breeding programme.”
The birth comes after Blackpool Zoo managed to breed another of the foals last year.
Trebego was the first to be born in Blackpool in nine years.
The new foal is yet to be named.