Salisbury Zoo seeks input on naming baby bear

The Salisbury Zoo’s 4-month-old cub has been busy exploring his zoo habitat with his mother, Chaska, in recent weeks. Although the zoo is currently closed, the city has shared photos of the cub on social media.

The Salisbury Zoo wants help naming its new Andean bear cub that was born Jan. 11 to mother Chaska and first-time father Pinocchio from Ecuador.

The public can go to salisburyzoo.org to vote on one of four names suggested by Pinocchio’s caregivers in Ecuador. These names are native Quichua, a native language in Peru, Ecuador, Argentina, Colombia, Bolivia and Chile.

  • Sinchi: is Quichua for strong.
  • Inti: is Quichua for sun.
  • Wayra: is Quichua for wind.
  • Sillu: is Quichua for claw.

The 4-month-old cub has been busy exploring his zoo habitat with mother Chaska in recent weeks. Although the zoo is currently closed, the city has shared photos of the cub on social media.

The zoo also posted a video in which the cub’s father, Pinocchio, revealed the gender of the new baby.

Pinocchio was rescued by the Ecuadorian Ministry of the Environment from a farmer who found him abandoned. Because he was too accustomed to being around humans, he was not able to be released back into the wild. He eventually found his forever home at the Salisbury Zoo.

This birth is of huge importance in Andean bear conservation, as Pinocchio’s genetics add to the diversity for future generations of Andean bears. Chaska came to Salisbury from the National Zoo in 2013. She and Gritto successfully mated and Chaska gave birth to her first cub, Alba in 2015. Alba now lives at the San Diego Zoo and recently gave birth to a cub.

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