There is a new adorable face on the block at Izu Shaboten Zoo. On 3 October 2020, the zoo welcomed in a new baby llama, born to mother ‘Sudachi’. The new addition brings the zoo’s total number of resident llamas to 8.

Born on 3 October 2020, the baby llama is a female of about 100 centimeters in size and weighing in at about 9 kilograms, though she expected to grow quickly as she takes in the essential nutrients from her mother’s milk.
Both baby and mother are currently on public display, although viewing of the two is dependent on both the weather and physical condition of the pair.

Llamas belong to the Camelid family and are sometimes referred to as ‘New World Camels’ due to their relation to the single humped (Dromedary camel) and doubled humped camels(Bactrian camel), or ‘Old World Camels’ of Africa and Central Asia.

Adult llamas grow to about 120-225cm in length, 109-119cm in shoulder height and can weigh in at about 130-155kg. The animals feature long slender necks and limbs, large ears and eyes, and wool-like fur. Unlike Old World Camels, the llama has evolved to lack the distinctive ‘hump’ we often associate with camelids.
Though generally mild-mannered, llamas have a tendency to ‘spit’ when trying to discipline other herd members or if it feels threatened. There is evidence that you can work out how agitated a llama may be depending on the contents of the ‘spit’, as the more irritated it is, it will attempt to draw materials from further back in each of its three stomach departments.

Llamas are herbivorous animals and eat a diet of thorny plants that most other animals will avoid. Domesticated llamas are fed on a variety of foods, including herbivore pellet food, hay bales, timothy-grass, and fresh green grass.
Newborn babies are able to stand within 20 minutes of birth and have their first feed in about 2 hours.

The baby llama is the newest addition to the Izu Shaboten Zoo’s family, which has been growing recently with the birth of a baby kangaroo (born 24th August 2020), baby squirrel monkey (born 2nd September 2020) and a baby bushbaby (born 4th September 2020).

By - Connie Sceaphierde.