PRAGUE (AP) — A Chinese language pangolin has been born within the Prague zoo, the primary beginning of the critically endangered animal in captivity in Europe, and is doing effectively after preliminary troubles, the park mentioned on Thursday.
For the primary few days after the infant feminine was born on Feb. 2, park keepers had been anxious as a result of it was dropping pounds.
The rationale was discovered to be that the mom, Run Hou Tang, didn’t have sufficient milk. Following consultations with consultants from Taiwan, a program of synthetic feeding with milk from a cat was launched and the mom was stimulated to supply extra of her personal.
That turned issues round, with the zoo now expressing cautious optimism in regards to the pup, which nonetheless has no identify however has been nicknamed “Little Cone” as a result of it resembles a spruce cone.
“We have now solely overcome the primary hurdle and others are nonetheless ready for us,” zoo director Miroslav Bobek mentioned.
The child’s beginning weight was simply 135 grams (4.76 ounces). Adults can attain as much as 15 kilos.
The Chinese language pangolin is native to southern China and southeastern Asia and is among the 4 pangolin species dwelling in Asia, whereas one other 4 could be present in Africa.
Prague obtained the uncommon animal from Taiwan final 12 months, changing into solely the second European zoo to maintain the species.
Guo Bao, the male pangolin, and Run Hou Tang each got here from the Taipei zoo, the main breeder of the mammals which might be hunted closely for his or her scales and meat.
It’s estimated that just about 200,000 had been trafficked in 2019 due to the scales which might be utilized in conventional drugs in Asia and elsewhere.
They’re troublesome to breed in captivity as a result of they require a particular feed that features drone larvae and want a specific humidity and temperature of their enclosure.
The pangolins’ arrival in Prague got here after the town determined to revoke a sister-city settlement with Beijing and signed an analogous deal in 2020 with the Taiwanese capital, Taipei. That settlement, which has brought on tensions with China, additionally included cooperation between the zoos of the 2 cities.
Taiwan break up from mainland China amid a civil battle in 1949, however Beijing considers the self-ruled island a part of its territory.
The Czech authorities acknowledges the one-China precept however Prague officers mentioned they wished to concentrate on cultural and different cooperation, not on politics.