It’s worth a trip to San Diego Zoo this month as they welcome an adorable new resident, Mosi. Okapi mom Mbaya gave birth to her first calf – adding one more individual to a population that is in steady decline worldwide. Only a few zoos in the United States house the endangered okapi, and 3-week-old Mosi (pronounced MO-see), standing on wobbly legs and with an evident sense of curiosity, became the first okapi to be born at the San Diego Zoo in four years.
Animal care staff said Mosi, which is Swahili for first-born, is a robust little guy who exhibits many of the same personality traits as his mom, including a calm and easygoing demeanor. They said because of both okapis’ relaxed temperaments, staff is able to successfully provide necessary care, and the opportunity for both mom and baby to thrive.
“This is her first calf, and she is allowing us to interact with this calf because she trusts us,” said John Michel, senior keeper at the San Diego Zoo. “It was a relationship we had developed over a long period of time prior to this calf being born. And so, the relationship we have with her is the same relationship we have with the calf, very trusting.”
For more information head to sandiegozoo.org.