Baby Animal Bonanza at the Zoo

Date: 
Sat, 05/25/2013

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. - May 25, 2013 - Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo is experiencing a baby bonanza with the birth of two male Nigerian Dwarf goats and six Guinea hog piglets, of which five are male and one is female. These new additions join two female Nigerian Dwarf goats born last month on Earth Day. The miniature kids and pint-sized piglets are already a huge hit with the public.

"This is a great time of year to visit the zoo and witness the new life that this time of year brings - whether it's the new baby animals or the  gorgeous flowers that are in bloom," stated Gregg Dancho, zoo director. "It doesn't matter your age - everyone loves baby animals," Dancho explained.

"Peaches," is a three-year-old Nigerian Dwarf goat and gave birth on May 4, 2013. The father, Rodney, will celebrate his first birthday in June. The baby goats, known as kids, are both healthy and happy and welcome additions to the goat yard. Rodney also sired the kids born in April to mother "Cupcake."  

The Guinea hog piglets range in weight from just under one pound to two pounds. Mom is "Olivia" and the father is "Hampton." Both are six years old. Hampton and Olivia last produced a litter of eight in June 2011, rivaling then-famous reality star Jon Goselin. The Zoo's one male and two female Guinea hogs came from Sedgwick County Zoo in Wichita and Virginia Zoo respectively.

Visitors will find the Guinea hogs and the Nigerian dwarf goats in the New England Farmyard.

About Guinea hogs

When fully grown, Guinea hogs may reach 100 to 300 pounds. They also are known as Pineywoods Guinea, Acorn eater, Guinea Forest hog, and Yard pig. They are called the "Yard pig" because of their small size and easy maintenance, which makes them the ideal pig for a family raise in a small yard. According to the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy (ALBC), the hogs were once the most numerous pig breed found on farms in the Southeast but today there are fewer than 200. Guinea hogs are classified as critical, versus endangered, by ALBC and are unique to the United States.

 About Nigerian Dwarf goats

Nigerian Dwarf goats are miniature dairy goats. The milk produced by these goats has higher butterfat content than their larger counterparts and tastes much sweeter. A doe (a grown female) can produce up to two quarts of sweet milk a day. Most females will grow to around 18 inches, while males can reach 23 inches. They weigh just around 75 pounds when fully grown and can be a full spectrum of colors, from black, brown, and white to spotted or striped. Bucklings (young males) may be fertile around 7 weeks of age, while mature females can breed as early as 8 months of age.

Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo is closer than you think and open daily from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. Adult admission (ages 12 & older) is $12.00, children (ages 3 -11) and senior admission (62 and older) is just $10.00, and children under 3 years old are free. Zoo members also are admitted free. Parking at the Zoo is free of charge. For more information about Connecticut's only zoo visit www.beardsleyzoo.org.

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