Giant Anteater Pup Born at Nashville Zoo
January 3, 2018
Nashville Zoo is pleased to announce the birth of one giant anteater pup born December 25, 2017. A carnivore keeper and docent walked into the giant anteater barn to a Christmas morning surprise.
“They were elated to discover that the female anteater, Consuela, had delivered a special Christmas gift,” said Shawna Farrington, carnivore area supervisor. “Curled under Consuela's hair and clinging tightly, was a new baby female anteater.”
This is Consuela’s (9) third pup and Carib (14), the father’s, fourth pup. This is Consuela’s second female pup. Both mom and baby are doing well.
The docent, Kerry Foth, who has been volunteering with the Zoo in various departments since 2003, named the newest addition Noel. The pup will stay with her mother for at least two years until she is fully grown.
Since 2001, 18 giant anteaters have been born at Nashville Zoo’s off-exhibit breeding facility. These reproductive successes have been enhanced by research projects done at the Zoo that focus on the biology of anteaters and their reproductive system.
The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) lists the giant anteater as vulnerable, although it is considered extinct in areas of Belize, Costa Rica, Guatemala and Uruguay. Giant anteaters are disappearing because of habitat destruction, hunting and road kills. Only about 5,000 anteaters remain in the wild.
Nashville Zoo is paired with the conservation organization The Giant Armadillo Project and is recognized as a leader in caring for both giant anteaters and tamanduas. The Zoo’s animal care and veterinary staff are currently working on an anteater care manual in conjunction with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums' Species Survival Program that will provide husbandry guidelines and veterinary issues associated with these species.
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 890,000 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.