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VIDEO: A baby armadillo born at Newquay zoo

VIDEO: A baby armadillo born at Newquay zoo

Published by the Pirate FM News Team at 3:12pm 20th March 2018. (Updated at 8:28am 21st March 2018)

A baby armadillo has been born at Newquay Zoo.

Keepers at are giving round-the-clock care to the new arrival.

The Cornish wildlife attraction is one of only 10 zoos in the UK to keep armadillos, and this is the first to be born in the UK this year.

Proud parents Wallace (Dad) and Gromit (Mum) arrived at Newquay Zoo in March 2017.

baby armadillo born at newquay zoo

Head Keeper, Sam Harley, said: "We are delighted to have this little one - we made the decision to hand rear him to give him the best possible chance of survival.

"So this means round-the-clock care from the keeping team.

"We've been up through the night to bottle feed him, which can prove very tiring, but it's all worth it!"

 

The word armadillo means "little armoured one" in Spanish and refers to the tough plated outer shell made of bone that gives protection from predators.

Fossils have been found going back to the Ice Age. Armadillos have poor eye-sight but a great sense of smell and are efficient burrowers.

Species are found throughout the Americas; the six-banded (Euphractus sexcinctus) comes from South America - mainly Brazil - and is the third-largest species of armadillo.

The baby is currently being fed from a bottle of special kitten milk replacement.

At just three weeks old the baby's eyes are firmly shut - they will begin to open at around 25 days.

baby armadillo born at newquay zoo

When he reaches around a month he will begin to eat more solid food.

Over the first four weeks the baby will quadruple in weight and will then start fending for himself.

Although there is a large population of armadillos in the wild, they are often hunted for meat and for their armoured shell.

The little one will be on show to the public alongside mum and dad in the coming weeks.

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