Our Eastern bongo family has grown!
Clover the Eastern bongo gave birth to a female calf the afternoon of October 10. Keepers kept an eye on Clover and the yet-to-be-named calf, while giving them time to bond, over the following days. An exam by our veterinary team on October 13 confirmed that both are healthy.
The calf sports a red coloring, just like her mom, and will keep that coloring. Male bongos, like the calf’s father Sebastian, are brown. Both Eastern bongo sexes have horns, although it’ll take some time for the calf to start growing horns.
This is the second calf for Clover, who gave birth to Ginger around this time last year! Ginger has already met her new sister, and the initial introductions went well. Clover is doing a good job of tending to her new calf and is actually allowing both her daughters to nurse at this time.
Clover actually weaned Ginger off of her milk some time ago, but Ginger is still fairly young, so she took to it again. Our animal care staff will keep an eye on the trio to make sure the calf is getting enough nutrition. They’ll leave it up to Clover for the time being to establish some boundaries if she feels that’s necessary.
Native to Kenya, Eastern bongo are critically endangered due to habitat loss and poaching. While every animal birth is special, this birth was particularly exciting because of the status of this species in their natural range.
Clover and Sebastian were matched by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Species Survival Plan, a program that manages the populations of animals within AZA-accredited zoos to ensure healthy, genetically diverse populations. We hope to add to our bongo herd in the near future – stay tuned for more news on this!
The Zoo’s Eastern bongos, along with other animal residents like our dromedary camels, Ankole-Watusi cattle and marabou stork, are visible from our Cape to Cairo Express train, which takes guests through their habitat. All of our bongos, including Clover and the new calf, can potentially be seen from the train.
Keep an eye on our social media channels for more updates!
Brevard Zoo is an independent, not-for-profit organization that receives no recurring government funding for our operating costs. Your generous support enables us to continue to serve our community and continue our vital animal wellness, education and conservation programs.