Baby wallaby at Salisbury Zoo awaits public debut

The baby wallaby at the Salisbury Zoo will be formally introduced to the public soon, but for now it’s enjoying life with the mother wallaby they call Petunia. It’s assumed the 4-year-old Bennett’s Wallaby gave birth around the first of November.

The baby wallaby at the Salisbury Zoo will be formally introduced to the public at the ribbon cutting for the Discover Australia Exhibit, but for now, it’s enjoying life with the mother wallaby they call Petunia.

It’s assumed the 4-year-old Bennett’s Wallaby gave birth around the first of November.

“Her pouch appeared to be getting larger and at times they thought they could detect movement.  Zoo staff were hopeful that a joey had been born and that it was developing in Mom’s pouch. Eventually they were rewarded with the sight of a small head peeking out of Mom’s pouch,” Mary Seemann, who handles marketing and development at the zoo, said.

“Since mid-April it has been making short appearances outside of its mother’s pouch, allowing a few lucky guests to catch a glimpse of the new joey. As it grows it will spend more time outside and visible to guests,” she said.

Once the joey starts spending more time outside the pouch zookeepers will be able to determine the gender.

“It’s very cute. When I first saw it didn’t have a lot of hair but now it’s getting some hair,” Seemann said.

“I haven’t seen it out of the pouch. It happens a lot that they give birth in zoos, but this is the first for us. We had a wallaby way back when, but we never had babies,” she said.

A cousin to the kangaroo, wallabies are found in Australia and surrounding islands. They spend the first few months of their lives developing in the pouch and emerge when they are big enough to fend for themselves.

 

Reach Susan Canfora at scanfora@newszap.com.

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