WIS gets a close-up look at baby flamingos, meerkats at Riverbanks Zoo
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - If you need a break with the kids, Riverbanks Zoo has some new animal children of its own to show off.
Fun facts about the flamingos from Nikki Hartman, Supervisor of Bird Department:
This year 3 flamingos hatched (3 months old right now) Gray in color right now but moving to pink
- Pink fades in over-time after 3 months until they’re about a year old
- Flamingos can be very protective of nests and eggs
- Parent flamingos turn white because they regurgitate nutrition including pigment to their chicks (basically giving chicks nutrition and color)
- Parents get their color back
- They “honk” to call back and forth to each other
- American Flamingos can live up to 60 years or longer
Fun facts about meerkats from India Kozel, Gorilla Small Mammal Keeper
- Four baby meerkats - unnamed right now
- 6 to 8 weeks old
- Came out above ground “fast” - following dad
- Pups will be the parents’ “shadow” until they’re ready to go out on their own
- Part of mongoose family, can be found in southern Africa
- Despite their cute appearance, they have “extremely sharp” teeth- so no hand feeding
- Love to dig tunnels
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