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Round up: Meet the babies at the Fort Worth Zoo

Say hello to the recent small-but-mighty additions — covering 17 species — to the 7,000+ animals at the Fort Worth Zoo.

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Ruby is the first mandrill born at the zoo in three decades.

Photo courtesy of the Fort Worth Zoo

Okay, okay, we might as well just rename ourselves “ZOOBABIEStoday” because we love the new additions to the Fort Worth Zoo about as much as we love Cowtown, itself.

To share our appreciation of Fort Worth’s furry, feathered, and scaled residents, we’re attempting to corral 17 different species who are less than one year old.

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Moja has entered the chat and is now in the Predators of Africa & Asia habitat. | Photo by Fort Worth Zoo

Not-so-little babies

You may have already heard, but the zoo welcomed some big little ones recently. Reticulated giraffe Korbel was born on Jan. 1 and has joined the tower in his habitat. Plus, Bellini, a female lesser kudu calf came into the world at the end the month on Jan. 30, weighing 13 pounds. She is now venturing the African Savanna and will grow up to 200 pounds.

In 2023, African lion Moja was born in October and is now prowling around the Predators exhibit with the rest of the pride. The Texas Wild habitat also has a new resident: longhorn Tabasco, who was born in May.

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While Jameela doesn’t live in Cowtown anymore, she’ll always be a Fort Worthian in our hearts.

Photo courtesy of the Fort Worth Zoo

Primates

Swinging around the World of Primates are two new colobus monkeys: Baloo, born on Jan. 24, and its half-sister Corey, who was named after Rangers slugger Corey Seager due to her birth during the World Series in November 2023.

On Jan. 11, Ruby was the third mandrill ever born at the zoo and the first since 1995. Keep an eye out for her mom Scarlett as Ruby is probably snuggled up.

In January, the zoo also welcomed western lowland gorilla Jameela via a pre-term cesarean section by local physician Jamie Erwin. Unfortunately, Jameela had trouble bonding with her mother and other female gorillas in the troop + was recently transferred to a gorilla surrogacy program at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo. Last week, she was held for the first time by her surrogate mother Freddy.

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Native to South Asia, the critically endangered gharial crocodiles can grow up to 20 feet long and this is only the second time in US history the animals have given birth in captivity.

Photo courtesy of the Fort Worth Zoo

Reptiles

Scaley critters are hatching all over the zoo starting with 34 Texas horned lizards in July and four ghairal crocodiles in August of last year, in a “monumental conservation success” as the only US institution to have produced multiple gharial offspring.

In January, a crocodile monitor hatched at the zoo — the first time in 25 years. One day, it will be eight feet long, vastly out-sizing its neighbors: six tiny veiled chameleons, who were born weighing less than one gram each.

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Darcy is already flapping around the Penguin exhibit.

Photo courtesy of the Fort Worth Zoo

Birds

The zoo celebrated major conservation success with the hatching of its first-ever rockhopper penguin chick, named Darcy, in December 2023 + a Victoria-crowned pigeon — the largest pigeon species in the world — in October 2023.

So far in 2024, four lesser flamingo chicks has joined the flock with more on the way.

Speaking of flamingos — last June, fluffy grey Caribbean flamingo chicks joined Flamingo Bay, and a kori bustard chick, one of the world’s heaviest flying birds, joined Texas Wild. Plus, in May 2023, three black-necked swans took their first swim around their habitat.

And now for the terrible two’s, see which older zoo babies are entering their toddler ear.

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