Animal Friend of the Week: A Regal Cheetah

A Regal Cheetah-

 

Cheetah are best known for their incredible speeds and are able to reach 100kph in 3 seconds. Their bodies are well adapted for this: they have non-retractable claws, a long heavy tail to help with turning, and they’re much leaner than other big cats.

In the wild 

IUCN: Vulnerable

Cheetah may be fast, but they’re non-confrontational animals and regularly have their kills stolen by other big cats.

They’re also incredibly vulnerable to conflict with farmers, as they are seen as a threat to their livestock and can be shot as a result.

Wellington Zoo contributes to their conservation by supporting Cheetah Outreach’s Livestock Guarding Dog Project – an initiative that works to resolve Cheetah and human conflict in South African farmlands by training Anatolian Shepherd Dogs to chase wild Cheetah away from the livestock they protect, ensuring the cats’ survival.

Wellington Zoo

Animal Friend of the Week Challenge Logo-

I want to showcase our animal kingdom.  It runs from Tuesday New Zealand time and is weekly.  You can join in anytime at all over the week.  You can post your furry friends (babies), wild animals, birds, insects and butterflies.  Even reptiles are welcome.

Just use this logo and link back to this blog.

I look forward to seeing all the different animals around the world

Thanks for visiting.

Animal Friend of the Week: Sun Conures

Wellington 2 262-Edit@0,1x

Sun Conures are very social and are known for their very loud squawks and screams compared to their comparatively small size – so you’ll probably hear them when you’re out and about in the Zoo.

Some of our flock were hand-reared after being rejected by their mother, andhese birds in particular are very friendly with the staff who raised them.

In the wild

IUCN: Endangered

Sun Conures, also known as Sun Parakeets, are native to northeastern South America. They form monogamous pairs as young as four months old, live in large flocks, and can live up to 30 years.

Their bright and beautiful colouring, combined with their intelligence and curious temperaments, make Sun Conures popular pets.

Unfortunately, they are now endangered and in decline primarily due to excessive trapping for the pet trade – which means that there are more Sun Conures living as pets than in the wild. They are now protected under the Wild Bird Conservation Act which bans the importation of wild–caught birds, and conservationists hope this will help to increase their numbers in the wild.

Wellington Zoo

Animal Friend of the Week Challenge Logo-

I want to showcase our animal kingdom.  It runs from Tuesday New Zealand time and is weekly.  You can join in anytime at all over the week.  You can post your furry friends (babies), wild animals, birds, insects and butterflies.  Even reptiles are welcome.

Just use this logo and link back to this blog.

I look forward to seeing all the different animals around the world

Thanks for visiting.

Animal Friend of the Week: Kunekune Pigs

Enjoying the sun

The kunekune /ˈknɪknɪ/[1] is a small breed of domestic pig from New Zealand. Kunekune are hairy, with a rotund build and may bear wattles (or piri piri) hanging from their lower jaws. Their colour ranges from black and white, to ginger, cream, gold-tip, black, brown and tricoloured. They have a docile, friendly nature, and – like the pot-bellied pig – are now often kept as pets.

Wikipedia – Kunekune

In the wild

DOC: Rare

Not much is known about how Kunekune came to New Zealand, but we think they were brought from Asia by whalers or traders. Maori gave them their name, which means ‘fat and round’.

By the 1980s, only an estimated 50 purebred Kunekune remained. They have since recovered into the thousands due to a well organised breeding programme, and today there are breed societies in both New Zealand and the United Kingdom. 

Wellington Zoo

Animal Friend of the Week Challenge Logo-

I want to showcase our animal kingdom.  It runs from Tuesday New Zealand time and is weekly.  You can join in anytime at all over the week.  You can post your furry friends (babies), wild animals, birds, insects and butterflies.  Even reptiles are welcome.

Just use this logo and link back to this blog.

I look forward to seeing all the different animals around the world

Thanks for visiting.

Animal Friend of the Week:Cunningham’s Skink

Wellington 1 1312@0,1x

Time to showcase a reptile this week for my animal friends challenge.  Going through the reptiles on Wellington Zoo’s website I realised that I must go back again as I missed so many.  Many of them were incognito – I never saw them, all I saw or so it seemed was empty glass cages.

This is Spitfire, a female Cunningham’s Skink. She was poking her face out to see who was around.

In the wild

IUCN: Least concern

The Cunningham’s Skink is a large lizard native to southeastern Australia, and is often confused with its lookalike Blue-Tongued cousins.

They live in groups and give birth to litters of live young instead of laying eggs.

Wellington Zoo

And thanks to Sonya for taking part last week.  She was lucky enough to catch a seal in the wild.

Sonyavdg: Animal Friend of the Week:Seal 

Animal Friend of the Week Challenge Logo-

I want to showcase our animal kingdom.  It runs from Tuesday New Zealand time and is weekly.  You can join in anytime at all over the week.  You can post your furry friends (babies), wild animals, birds, insects and butterflies.  Even reptiles are welcome.

Just use this logo and link back to this blog.

I look forward to seeing all the different animals around the world

Thanks for visiting.

Animal Friend of the Week: Silvereyes

Around About 156@0,1x

Good morning from a grey and cool day here in Hastings.

My computer is by a window and I can look out onto the trees lining our street.  I sit here with my camera ready as I never know what I will see.  The other day I noticed a flock of silvereyes flitting around the tree, eating these berries.  They are really tiny but they have a beautiful birdsong.  So of course, guess what I then do – that’s right, the computer is forgotten while I shoot them.  With the camera of course.

The silvereye is a common small songbird immediately recognisable by its distinctive white eye-ring. It has olive-green plumage on the head, lower back and upper tail, and mid-grey on the hindneck, sides of neck and upper back. The upper wings are mostly dark olive green, with narrow lines of yellowish green, and the tail is dark olive green. The underparts are whitish-cream on the throat and upper breast, creamy grey on the belly and undertail, the flanks are pinkish-buff, the thighs are white, and the underside of the wings creamy-white. The dark brownish-black bill is fine, short and sharply pointed. The iris is dark reddish-brown, and the legs and feet pale brown. The sexes are alike. Juveniles have similar colouring to adults but lack the white eye-ring.

Voice: a range of clear often high-pitched and melodious calls including warbles, and trills, often repeated, used in a wide variety of contexts. The main contact is a plaintive creee, and the flight call a shorter cli-cli, with many birds calling at once. Full song is a quiet, long liquid warble, similar to the song of the dunnock.

Similar species: bellbird is similar build but twice the size, lacks the white-eye ring and is olive-green on underparts as well as upperparts.

A gregarious species, silvereyes are well known for flocking especially in winter. They are a mobile species that forages actively for food in parklands, woodlands, suburban gardens, forests and scrublands. Aggressive interactions are common within flocks, with a dominant bird performing rapid wing fluttering and short aggressive chases of other birds. Some local seasonal movement and even migration within the country may occur; for example, a bird banded in Marlborough was recovered in Wellington.

New Zealand Birds

I just loved this adorable rabbit over at Sonya’s blog –

Sonyavdg: Animal Friend of the Week

 

Animal Friend of the Week Challenge Logo-

I want to showcase our animal kingdom.  It runs from Tuesday New Zealand time and is weekly.  You can join in anytime at all over the week.  You can post your furry friends (babies), wild animals, birds, insects and butterflies.  Even reptiles are welcome.

Just use this logo and link back to this blog.

I look forward to seeing all the different animals around the world

Thanks for visiting.

Animal Friend of the Week: New Zealand’s Pukako

Pukako

The pukeko is a widespread and easily recognisable bird that has benefitted greatly by the clearing of land for agriculture. In addition to its brilliant red frontal shield and deep violet breast plumage, the pukeko is interesting for having a complex social life. In many areas, pukeko live in permanent social groups and defend a shared territory that is used for both feeding and breeding. Social groups can have multiple breeding males and females, but all eggs are laid in a single nest and the group offspring are raised by all group members.

Identification

The pukeko is a large, conspicious rail found throughout New Zealand. The head, breast and throat are deep blue/violet, the back and wings are black, and the under-tail coverts are conspicuously white. The conical bright red bill is connected to a similarly coloured ‘frontal shield’ ornament covering the forehead, the eyes are also red. The legs and feet are orange, with long, slim toes. Females are smaller than males, but similarly coloured. Juveniles are similar to adults but duller, with black eyes and black bill and shield that turn to red around 3 months of age.

More information available here at NZ Birds Online.

Animal Friend of the Week Challenge Logo-

I want to showcase our animal kingdom.  It runs from Tuesday New Zealand time and is weekly.  You can join in anytime at all over the week.  You can post your furry friends (babies), wild animals, birds, insects and butterflies.  Even reptiles are welcome.

Just use this logo and link back to this blog.

I look forward to seeing all the different animals around the world

Thanks to Aletta for taking part.

Nowathome: Animal Friend of the Week-Blue Crane

Thanks for visiting.

Animal Friend of the Week: Sulphur-Crested Cockatoos

Sulphur crested cockatoo-

In the wild

IUCN: Least concern

Sulphur–crested Cockatoos are native to Australia and New Guinea, but there are several wild populations in New Zealand that likely originated from pet birds that were released illegally.

Cockatoos can live for a very long time – upwards of 70 years. They waterproof their feathers by creating a white powder, instead of oil (like most other birds).

Wellington Zoo

Thanks to Sonya for taking part last week – check out her post:

sonyavdg: Animal Friend of the Week – Meerkats

Her photo is amazing – a lot better than what I managed.

Animal Friend of the Week Challenge Logo-

I want to showcase our animal kingdom.  It runs from Tuesday New Zealand time and is weekly.  You can join in anytime at all over the week.  You can post your furry friends (babies), wild animals, birds, insects and butterflies.  Even reptiles are welcome.

Just use this logo and link back to this blog.

I look forward to seeing all the different animals around the world

Thanks for visiting.

Animal Friend of the Week: Baboons

Baboon-

Wellington Zoo is home to a group of seven Hamadryas Baboons, which is just one of the five Baboon sub-species. You can easily spot the alpha males with their impressive long silvery capes, while the younger males are brown. 

As you might have noticed, they all have bright pink bottoms! These serve as cushions, so they can sit on thin branches high up in trees for really long stretches of time to stay safe from predators.

Baboons don’t appreciate eye contact and toothy smiles as much as we do – in fact; both of these things are considered threats in their societies. They respond by raising their eyebrows, showing the whites of their eyelids or baring their teeth to intimidate their enemies.

These beautiful beasts were very curious about my camera and just posed for me so well.

In the wild

IUCN: Least concern

Baboons are known as ‘Old World monkeys’, which means they come from Africa – as opposed to ‘New World monkeys’ from South America.

Hamadryas Baboons are also known as ‘Sacred Baboons’, due to their importance to the ancient Egyptians. Though currently extinct in Egypt, they are found in large populations in Ethiopia, Somalia, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen.

Human conflict is their biggest threat to these monkeys, who are mostly tolerated by farmers but will occasionally destroy agricultural crops and can become aggressive when approached. 

Wellington Zoo

 

Animal Friend of the Week Challenge Logo-

I want to showcase our animal kingdom.  It runs from Tuesday New Zealand time and is weekly.  You can join in anytime at all over the week.  You can post your furry friends (babies), wild animals, birds, insects and butterflies.  Even reptiles are welcome.

Just use this logo and link back to this blog.

I look forward to seeing all the different animals around the world

Thanks for visiting

Animal Friend of the Week: Nosy Emus

Nosy Emu-

Good morning from another very chilly start to our day here in Hastings.

When I was around 15, my family traveled to Sydney, Australia.  While there we went to the zoo.  One strong memory I have is that the emus are rather nosy and aggressive.  And this emu was certainly nosy and wanted to see what I was doing pointing a camera at it.

Nosy Emus-

And they were noisy too.  This one looks very chatty and shows off it’s beautiful plumage.

A little info:

Their diet includes chopped up vegetables and pellets, but did you know that Emu also swallow stones to aid digestion? In fact, these inquisitive birds will eat almost anything

In the wild

IUCN: Least concern

Emu are large, soft–feathered, flightless birds endemic to Australia. They’re the world’s second largest bird after the African Ostrich, and can grow up to 1.9m tall.

Did you know that males and females communicate using different sounds? Females make a booming sound, while males make a loud grunt. 

Wellington Zoo

Animal Friend of the Week Challenge Logo-

I want to showcase our animal kingdom.  It runs from Tuesday New Zealand time and is weekly.  You can join in anytime at all over the week.  You can post your furry friends (babies), wild animals, birds, insects and butterflies.  Even reptiles are welcome.

Just use this logo and link back to this blog.

I look forward to seeing all the different animals around the world

Thanks for visiting.

Middleton Road: Animal Friend of the Week: Tasmanian Devil

 

Animal Friend of the Week: Cotton Top Tamarins

Cotton Top Tamarins-

Good morning from a cold and dark Hastings morning. Yes, I am up before the sun today.  I have my painting class and then after that I am teaching some basic Photoshop skills.

Anyway here is another endangered species for my Animal Friend this week.  As I am researching the animals I find it so sad that these beautiful creatures are endangered due to us humans taking over their habitats for the sake of the almighty dollar.

In the wild

IUCN: Critically endangered

Cotton Top Tamarins are only found in Colombia and are one of the most endangered primates due to habitat loss, with only an estimated 6,000 in the wild.

Wellington Zoo supports Proyecto Titi, a conservation project in Colombia focused on saving the Cotton-top Tamarins and their wild habitats.

Wellington Zoo

They are just sooooooo adorable.

Animal Friend of the Week Challenge Logo-

I want to showcase our animal kingdom.  It runs from Tuesday New Zealand time and is weekly.  You can join in anytime at all over the week.  You can post your furry friends (babies), wild animals, birds, insects and butterflies.  Even reptiles are welcome.

Just use this logo and link back to this blog.

I look forward to seeing all the different animals around the world

Thanks for visiting

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