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Ring-tailed lemur in the indoor enclosure.

NEW FEMALE THREE BANDED ARMADILLO FOR GURT

Animal news | 16 February 2022

Kugelgürteltier Bu

Early February saw a new inhabitant arrive at the Prof. Brandes House. The eight-month-old three banded armadillo comes from Budapest Zoo and was named Bu in honour of her place of birth.

After our old female, Ösi-Schnalle, fell seriously ill last year and had to be put down to spare her any more suffering, we began looking for a new female to breed with our 12-year-old male, Gurt. It will be another few weeks before Bu is ready to start a family, however, as three banded armadillos only reach sexual maturity at 9 to 12 months. For the moment, Bu is living with our other female three banded armadillo, Schnalle, behind the scenes. “Omi” (“granny”), as Schnalle is fondly called by our keepers, is now thought to be in her mid-20s and is enjoying a well-earned retirement with us.

Male armadillo Gurt came to Dresden Zoo in 2009 as the first three banded armadillo in the zoo’s history. He has produced 14 offspring with Schnalle and Ösi-Schnalle, all successfully reared and sent to numerous other zoos, among them Wroclaw, Plock, Chemnitz, Chessington, Hoyerswerda, Manchester and Zagreb. We hope that Bu and Gurt will begin a new chapter in this success story. Three banded armadillos give birth after a gestation period of around 120 days; their young are only the size of a tennis ball.

By the way: Gurt is currently to be found dashing around in the large enclosure with the emperor tamarins, if you can spot him on his laps.

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