Bactrian Camel Born at the Toledo Zoo

Posted: Wednesday, June 27, 2018 by: Shayla Moriarty | Category: Community Interest

TOLEDO, Ohio — Toledo Zoo is excited to celebrate every day as hump day with the birth of a female Bactrian camel on May 6, 2018! The new camel was born to mother, Sasha, and father, Cash and has been named Zehra, (zar-rah) which means bright in Mongolian. She was born with two small humps that will fill out as she grows, curly gray hair, weighing 64 pounds and standing about three feet tall. Zoo visitors will get an extra special treat too, as they will be able to learn more about the Zoo’s newest resident as they view her daily bottle-feeding sessions with animal care staff. Please stay tuned to and the Zoo’s social media accounts for additional details of the sessions, which will hopefully be open to the public near the end of June. Zehra is being bottle-fed because as a first-time mother, Sasha did not immediately know what to do after giving birth. The Zoo’s animal care and vet staffs stepped in quickly and cared for the new baby, including bottle-feeding session every few hours. As the new offspring did not nurse, she did not receive proper nutrition and immune defenses from Sasha and required supplements, antibiotics and a plasma transfusion. Our vet staff collected blood from our other two adult camels, sent it out have the plasma separated, gave Zehra the transfusion and banked extra plasma for any future needs. Since the transfusion, Zehra is in good health, eating well and gaining weight. Thankfully, for another newborn camel, extra plasma was banked. Soon after Zehra’s birth, The Wilds in Cumberland, Ohio called the Zoo with a similar camel birth situation. They had heard through the animal “grapevine” about Zehra and asked for any advice. The Zoo offered more than just advice… the Zoo’s vet staff drove extra plasma to Cumberland and thankfully the male calf in southern Ohio made a successful health turn-around! Bactrian camels (Camelus bactrianus) are herbivores that have two humps to store fat and are native to the rocky deserts of central and east Asia. They can grow to be over seven feet tall at their humps, weigh in excess of 1,800 pounds and are the only species of camels left in the wild. The species is listed as endangered as surviving wild herds are believed to number less than 1,000 animals. Bactrian camels are managed by a Species Survival Plan coordinated by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and this is the first birth at the Zoo in recent history. Stop by and see Zhera the camel and her two humps soon!

Press Release Contact Name: Shayla Moriarty
Press Release Contact Email:
Press Release Contact Phone: 419-385-5721 ext. 2155
Organization Name: The Toledo Zoo
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