A newborn aardvark has been born at Chester Zoo for the first time in its 90-year history, writes lancs
Conservationists discovered the new arrival snuggled up with its eight-year-old mum Oni and six-year-old dad Koos after it had been born overnight on January 4.
The calf, born with large droopy ears, hairless wrinkled skin and giant claws, is currently being hand-reared every evening by zookeepers who are providing dedicated care, feeding the baby every few hours through the night for around five weeks, to help it gain strength.
The sex of the new arrival is yet to be determined but staff have nicknamed the youngster Dobby due to its resemblance to the much-loved Harry Potter character.
Aardvarks are native in sub-Saharan Africa where they are threatened by habitat loss as a result of agricultural development, which also bring them into conflict with local farmers. They are also hunted for their meat.
The word aardvark translates to “earth pig” in the language of Afrikaans. The nocturnal animals use their long noses and keen sense of smell to sniff out ants and termites, which they lap up with a long tongue measuring up to 25cm, covered in sticky saliva.
The animals use their powerful claws to tear open termite mounds, as well as to dig underground burrows in which they sleep.
Dave White, Team Manager at the zoo, said: “This is the very first aardvark to be born at the zoo and so it’s a momentous landmark for us and a real cause for celebration. We’re overjoyed.
“As soon as we spotted the new baby next to mum we noticed its uncanny resemblance to the Harry Potter character, Dobby, and so that’s the calf’s nickname for the time being! We won’t though know for certain whether it’s male or female for several more weeks until the calf is a little older.
“Aardvark parents are notorious for being a little clumsy around their newborns. With the baby being so tiny and fragile, we’re therefore protecting it from any accidental knocks and bumps by helping mum out with supplementary feeding sessions throughout the night, just until the calf is a little stronger.
“So, in the evening, when the parents are out exploring and feeding, we carefully place the calf into a special incubator and take it home to feed with warm milk every few hours. The calf then spends the daytime bonding and snuggled up with mum Oni inside her burrow – and they’re both doing great together.”
With only 66 aardvarks found in zoos across Europe, and a mere 109 in zoos worldwide, Chester is one of just a small number of zoos caring for the species.
Mark Brayshaw, Curator of Mammals at the zoo, added: “Aardvarks are quite secretive creatures, which are mostly only ever active in darkness, and so some aspects of how they go about their lives remain relatively unknown. Caring for species like aardvarks in zoos enables us to learn more about them – how they live, their behaviours and their biology.
“All of this information is then shared with other leading conservation zoos and helps to better inform our efforts to preserve their numbers.
“This new calf joins a conservation breeding programme that only a handful of zoos are part of globally.”
What five characteristics do all animals have in common?
What five characteristics do all animals have in common?
In the following slides, we’ll explore the basic characteristics shared by all (or at least most) animals, from snails and zebras to mongooses and sea anemones: multicellularity, eukaryotic cell structure, specialized tissues, sexual reproduction, a blastula stage of development, motility, heterotrophy and possession …
What characteristics do all animals have in common quizlet?
The six characteristics that all organisms in the animal kingdom share are: they are multicellular, almost all can move, their cells have no cell wall, they have to hunt for their own food (consumers), they are eukaryotic, reproduce sexually-when two cells join to form off spring and their cells lack chloroplasts.
What 4 characteristics do all animals share?
Most animals share these characteristics: sensory organs, movement, and internal digestion. All of them are illustrated in Figure below. Animals can detect environmental stimuli, such as light, sound, and touch. Stimuli are detected by sensory nerve cells.
What are the 7 characteristics of all animals?
- 1 Nutrition. Living things take in materials from their surroundings that they use for growth or to provide energy.
- 2 Respiration.
- 3 Movement.
- 4 Excretion.
- 5 Growth.
- 6 Reproduction.
- 7 Sensitivity.
What are the 6 characteristics common to all animals?
They are as follows:
- All animals are made up of cells that do not have cell walls.
- All animals are multicellular organisms.
- Most animals reproduce sexually.
- All animals are capable of self-propelled motion at some point in their lives.
- All animals are heterotrophic and must consume other organisms for energy.
What protein do all animals have in common?
The exctracellular protein collagen (making the most abundant extracellular protein in animals) which is required in multicellular organisms to keep the cells together, which is exclusive to animals. Most enzymes responsible for metabolic pathways.
What are the 3 characteristics of animals?
Characteristics of Animals
- Animals are multicellular organisms.
- Animals are eukaryotic.
- Animals are heterotrophic.
- Animals are generally motile.
- Animals possess specialized sensory organs such as eyes, ears, nose, skin, and tongue.
- Animals reproduce sexually.
What are the basic characteristics of all animals?
In the following slides, we’ll explore the basic characteristics shared by all (or at least most) animals, from snails and zebras to mongooses and sea anemones: multicellularity, eukaryotic cell structure, specialized tissues, sexual reproduction, a blastula stage of development, motility, heterotrophy and possession of an advanced nervous system.
What do all animals have in common with each other?
Sexual reproduction is another characteristic shared by most, but not all, animals. Regardless of species, all animals share multicellularity, which means their bodies consist of multiple cells. This sets animals apart from organisms, such as single-celled algae, fungi, bacteria and other basic life forms.
What do plants and animals have in common?
Most plants are also multicellular, so although this is a characteristic shared by all animals, it is not one unique to animals.Every animal on the planet is a eukaryote. A eukaryote is an organism that consists of cells that have membrane-bound nuclei and organelles.
What are the characteristics of the animal kingdom?
All animals are eukaryotic, multicellular organisms, and most animals have complex tissue structure with differentiated and specialized tissue. Animals are heterotrophs; they must consume living or dead organisms since they cannot synthesize their own food and can be carnivores, herbivores, omnivores, or parasites.