Pretoria Zoo bolsters its attractions with long-necked new residents

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PRETORIA, March 19 – Visitors planning to spend Human Rights Day on March 21 at the National Zoological Gardens of South Africa (NZG), situated in the Pretoria CBD, are in for a special treat, as additional animals have been added to the treasured nature conservancy which is a major attraction for young and old alike.

On Monday, NZG spokesperson Craig Allenby opened the gates of the zoo to journalists in Pretoria, showing off a beautiful male giraffe, three new Arabian camels, a King vulture, and hundreds of fish that now call the Pretoria conservation centre their home.

“The National Zoo has recently received a number of new additions to its animal collection, which includes three young Arabian camels. Today [Monday] we received a new giraffe bull, to add onto our collection,” said Allenby.

“He is a two-year-old bull, and he is now accompanying a female which is three years old, and her name is Mimosa. All went on very well today at the National Zoo, and all these animals are on display.

“Members of the public are welcome to come and see them over the various public holidays in the month of March,” he said.

The giraffe bull and Mimosa have seemingly settled down for a long companionship in the NGZ’s main giraffe enclosure. The giraffe enclosure is currently closed off with shade netting to ensure that the bull acclimatises to his new home. It also gives the male and female a chance to get to know each other better. The shade netting will be removed in approximately 30 days.

According to NZG, a giraffe is known to live up to approximately 28 years in the wild, and much longer in a zoo habitat, particularly because the food is healthier and more frequent. Another advantage of the zoo is that veterinary care is but a call away.

Giraffes reach heights of six metres. Mimosa has been in the Pretoria enclosure since 2015.

The three Arabian camels added to the zoo are all one-and-a-half years old. These camels are also known as dromedary camels. They can be found in North Africa and the Middle East.

The NZG aquarium has now also become 250 fish richer with the arrival of various exotic marine fish. Some of the new fish on display include blue tangs (from Finding Dory fame), sea anemones, venomous devilfish, also known as lionfish, and even stingrays.

The NZG’s avian collection has also become one King vulture richer. The youngster was received from the zoo’s Mokopane Biodiversity Conservation Centre in Limpopo. It has been placed in his enclosure and the NZG said it was “doing very well”.

– African News Agency (ANA)