|Saint Louis ZOO
in Forest Park
9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Asian Elephant Calf Priya Makes Debut
Asian elephant calf Priya met her St. Louis family, May 22, 2013 for the first time. Photo by Ray Meibaum/Saint Louis Zoo
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), May 22, 2013 - The Saint Louis Zoo's Asian elephant calf, Priya (pronounced "Pree-yah"), is ready to meet her St. Louis family!
Beginning Wednesday, May 22 to Friday, May 24, the calf's and mother's time in the areas where the visitors can view them will be from approximately 10 a.m. until about noon and from approximately 2 to 4 p.m. After the debut, the mother and calf will be on view, weather permitting, but not at scheduled times. The calf and mother will probably not be on view all day.
Born April 26, the 3-week-old calf will be with her mother Ellie and other members of her three generation family at her debut.
During her first days of life, she met her mother, aunties and older sisters who have warmly welcomed her into the family. The elephant care team has been gradually introducing her to the habitats at River's Edge.
"An experienced mother and grandmother, Ellie was, of course, very nurturing, caring for her newborn baby from the very beginning," said Fischer. "Both Ellie and Priya are doing well."
This is Ellie's third baby and the fourth for the baby's father Raja, the first elephant ever born at the Saint Louis Zoo. Now, at age 20, he has his own three-generation family, with daughter Maliha, born on August 2, 2006; Jade, born February 25, 2007; and Kenzi, born on June 24, 2011.
Springtime is Baby Time at the Zoo
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), May 10, 2013 - In addition to the much-heralded female baby elephant Priya born on April 26, the Saint Louis Zoo also welcomed a male Bactrian camel named Stan, who was born on April 8. This critically endangered species is native to Mongolia in central Asia. Baby camels are born with two humps, like their parents, but at birth, they lay flat against their sides until they can store up energy-rich fat.
The camel was joined by a lot of other offspring in Red Rocks, where visitors can view some of the world's most powerful predators living near some of the world's most graceful prey. Two baby Speke's gazelles, both male, arrived this spring - one was named Fragilistic (born March 1) and the other Teller (born April 10). From Somalia and Ethiopia and endangered, this graceful antelope (the smallest of all gazelles) reaches a maximum shoulder height of only about two feet.
Sunny, a female lowland nyala, was born March 8. This elusive antelope lives in southern Africa and is one of the largest antelope, standing over four feet at the shoulder.
A male mountain bongo, Djembe, was born March 18. The mountain bongo is an endangered subspecies of antelope that lives only in a few pockets of mountain forests in Kenya.
Later, on April 7, a male banteng, named Cruze, arrived. An endangered species of wild cattle native to Southeast Asia, both male and female banteng calves are born with red coats, but during their first year of life, juvenile bantengs develop their characteristic white stockings and rump patches. At this time juvenile banteng bulls' coats gradually turn from red to black.
Then came four Transcaspian urial lambs, two females and two males - all born between April 8 and April 11. Originally from India and Iran, urials live in open, rolling terrain where these wild sheep feed primarily on grass. (See video of these lambs on youtube.com/stlzootube.)
To top it off, the Zoo now has four babirusa piglets, a species of threatened sparsely-haired pigs native to Indonesia; they arrived between November 2011 and January 2012.
And at Penguin & Puffin Coast, the Zoo welcomed two Humboldt penguin chicks, born March 16 and 17. These threatened birds live in Peru and Chile.
Between April 29 and May 1, four elegant crested tinamou hatched. Tinamou are related to the ostrich and emu and are known for their brilliantly colored eggs. The elegant crested tinamou has a bright green egg and is found in dry lowland shrub land and farm land in Southern Chile and Argentina. Their arrival adds yet more diversity to the Zoo's amazing array of birds.
This is only a representative listing of the new arrivals; it does not include the many reptiles and insects born this spring.
Emerson Zooline Railroad Marks 50 Years
One of the Zoo's most popular attractions, the Emerson Zooline Railroad offers a 20-minute narrated tour weaving through tunnels and past favorite animal exhibits on a 1 1/2-mile round trip, from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., during the summer. SLFP.com file photo
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), April 26, 2013 - The Emerson Zooline Railroad - the nation's largest miniature rail line - celebrates its 50th year in 2013. The Zooline Railroad became the Emerson Zooline Railroad in 2010 when the Zoo received a $5 million, multi-year gift from Emerson. The rail line has carried nearly 35 million riders since its first trip on August 30, 1963.
The rail line's 20-minute narrated ride, starting from the Wild Station, moves past the Bear Bluffs, The Living World, Monsanto Insectarium, the Emerson Children's Zoo and along a 225-foot-long trestle. The train moves into River's Edge, passing the cheetahs and elephants, moving under a waterfall, through two underground tunnels, then past tigers, birds, and apes and finally back to the Wild Station.
Though the Zooline is gasoline-powered, it has the bells and whistles of a steam engine. Carrying passengers over 1 1/2 miles of track that includes 8,638 railroad ties, the railroad can reach a top speed of seven miles per hour. Six locomotives, each weighing an impressive 6,600 pounds, pulling five trains of six coaches each, bring Zooline seating capacity to 78 adult passengers. Each train was fitted in 1995 with a special coach to accommodate riders who use wheelchairs.
The Zooline's engines are a one-third size replica of the original C. P. Huntington, a famous steam locomotive first built in 1863. Known as the "Iron Horse," the C. P. Huntington helped build the first transcontinental railway.
"I truly believe that railroads like ours are timeless experiences," said Ryan Jeffery, manager, Guest Services & Attractions. "They parallel our history from the westward expansion to industrialization to the family road trip. We all hold onto memories of riding the rails. At our Zoo, we work hard to recreate the railroad's golden age from the replica of one of the most famous locomotives to engineers dressed in traditional overalls. We are truly lucky to have this incredible experience as part of our great Zoo history."
Tickets to the Zooline Railroad are $5 per person. Children under 2 are free.
The Zoo's spring hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily through May 23. Beginning May 24 through September 2, 2013, the Zoo is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday through Sunday for Prairie Farms Summer Zoo Weekends.
The Zoo will be open until 7 p.m. on Memorial Day, July 4 and Labor Day. The Zoo will close at 12 noon on Friday, June 21, because of ZOOFARI, the Zoo's major biennial fundraiser.
The Saint Louis ZOO is home to more than 3,000 animals and features Jungle of the Apes and Big Cat Country. Additional attractions include the Emerson Electric Children's Zoo, The Living World educational center, River's Edge, "Penguin & Puffin Coast," Monsanto Insectarium, Mary Ann Lee Conservation Carousel, sea lion shows and bird house.
Accent your office, restaurant, hotel or home with exciting images of St. Louis. For a fine art print of the 1904 World's Fair Bird Cage, see stlouisphotos.com
The World's Fair Flight Cage at the Zoo and the Saint Louis Art Museum, located north east of the Zoo, are the two structures remaining in Forest Park that were built for the 1904 World's Fair. Photos highlighting the 1904 World's Fair can be seen at the Missouri Historical Society, located in the Jefferson Memorial Building in Forest Park.
The Zoo is open year round, except December 25 and January 1. Summer hours are 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily, Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day.
Non-summer hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. General admission to the Zoo is FREE. Parking on the Zoo's two lots is $11 per day. Parking for buses, motor homes and R.V.s is $22 and is available on the South Lot only. Some events and special programs may have an admission cost.
Note: Coolers and picnic baskets are permitted on the Zoo grounds. There are picnic tables located in central areas at the Zoo. All major facilities are wheelchair accessible, as are most restrooms. Wheelchairs and strollers are available to rent at The Living World and South Gate. Wheelchairs: $7 per day; motorized vehicles (limited number) available to those 18 years or older with a major credit card: $25 per day; single strollers are $7 per day; double strollers are $9 per day. For more information, please call 314-781-0900, 1-800-966-8877 or TDD: 314-768-5421.
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