A baby mountain bongo antelope is seen with her mother Walkiria, few days after its birth, in a paddock at Warsaw Zoo, Warsaw, Poland June 23, 2021. REUTERS/Aleksandra Szmigiel
The birth of the second critically endangered antelope in less than three months made a zoo in the Polish capital Warsaw proud, its staff said, as the newborn mountain bongo enjoyed her third walk outside on Wednesday.
“It is a critically endangered species therefore zoos are very proud when they fulfill part of their mission – to save and protect endangered species,” said Warsaw Zoo spokesperson Anna Tadra..
The antelope, born on June 15, is a half-sister of mountain bongo Molly, born at the zoo in April. The newborns share a father, named Franek, but have a different mother.
Wednesday was a special day for Franek as he could celebrate Polish Father’s Day for the first time, zookeeper of antelopes and giraffes Magdalena Smolinska said.
“The little one has already exchanged kisses with her dad,” she added.
The antelope sisters have not met yet but have seen each other through a metal fence separating their enclosures, Smolinska told Reuters.
The zoo proposed four names for the baby mountain bongo, each starting with the letter M, and asked the public to vote for their favourite one on social media.
Mountain bongos, the largest among African forest antelopes, are a critically endangered species with only about 70-80 adults left in the wild, according to the IUCN’s Red List of Threatened Species.
The animals are nocturnal and have a striking appearance due to their long horns and their reddish-brown coat offset with white or yellow markings in the form of thin vertical lines.