Meerkat Pups Born at Nashville Zoo
Nashville Zoo is pleased to announce the birth of three meerkats on August 17, 2017. This is the first offspring for parents Calvin (age 11) and Victoria (age 9). The pair has been together for 2.5 years, but have never successfully produced pups.
“Calvin and Victoria are proving to be great parents and have shown constant attention to the new additions,” said Sabrina Barnes, Area Supervisor of Primates. “We are very excited to once again have meerkat pups at Nashville Zoo!”
Keepers have noticed Calvin and Victoria taking turns taking care of the kids. When Victoria is not in the burrow nursing the pups, Calvin is inside the burrow caring for them. Meerkat society is centered around family groups, relying heavily on group cooperation. These pups will stay at the Nashville Zoo to live in a family group. The average litter size for meerkats ranges from 1 to 6 pups and pups average 25-35 grams in weight when born.
In the wild, meerkats are currently listed as a species of “Least Concern” by the IUCN Red List. Meerkats live throughout southern Africa and are present in several protected areas, with no major threats at this time. Nashville Zoo participates in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Species Survival Plan for this species to maintain the captive population.
About Nashville Zoo
Nashville Zoo is accredited by the prestigious Association of Zoos and Aquariums, assuring the highest standards of animal care and husbandry. Attracting more than 800,000 visitors annually, the Zoo is considered one of the top things to do in Nashville. The Zoo is a non-profit organization located at 3777 Nolensville Pike and is open every day except Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day. The mission of Nashville Zoo is to inspire a culture of understanding and discovery of our natural world through conservation, innovation and leadership. For more information about Nashville Zoo, call 615-833-1534 or visit www.nashvillezoo.org.