The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore’s newest animal addition, the baby blue duiker announced born last month has a name and a truly unique baby monitor that the public can view! The month-old calf has been named “Poppy” by her Animal Care Team and the Zoo is pleased to offer a peek into the behind-the-scenes area where Poppy and her mom Flower are currently living.
On the new webcam, Poppy can be seen napping, nursing and frolicking with her mom. The two will live behind the scenes until the spring, when Poppy is weaned and big enough to live in the African Aviary habitat with her mom and dad, Lucky.
“With a tiny baby like this, it’s important for us to keep a close watch on her daily feeding and development,” said Margaret Rose-Innes, assistant general curator. “Poppy is delicate but she is doing well and growing fast. It’s wonderful to watch her play and interact with her mom.”
Blue duiker (Philantomba monticola) is a species of antelope found in the forests of western, southern and eastern Africa. They weigh seven to 20 pounds. While they are currently not classified as threatened or endangered, their population is affected by over-hunting and loss of habitat. The duiker gets its name from the Afrikaans word ‘duiker’ which means to dive, which relates to the animal’s habit of ducking away into bushes when danger threatens.
The birth was a result of a breeding recommendation from the Blue Duiker Species Survival Plan (SSP) coordinated by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). SSPs provide breeding recommendations to maximize genetic diversity, with the goal of ensuring health of the individual animal, as well as the long-term survival of the species population to help save animals from extinction.
Poppy and Flower can be seen on http://www.marylandzoo.org/duikercam. Visitors wanting to get a personal behind-the-scenes glimpse of the mom and baby, and many other animals, can register for the Africa Barn Tour.
Lucky, the calf’s father, can be found in the African Aviary. For updates on the baby, please visit www.marylandzoo.org and www.facebook.com/marylandzoo.