There’s a new addition to the African Waterhole habitat at the Milwaukee County Zoo — can you guess who? It’s a kudu!
A female greater kudu (pronounced “koo-doo”) calf was born Sat., Aug. 5 to mother Imani and father Hasani. The calf is named Chula, or “cute” in Spanish, and she was up and walking shortly after birth. The following day, Chula weighed 15.1 kg at her neonate exam.
Greater kudus are one of the tallest antelope and native to the dense bush and forested areas of eastern and southern Africa. Females are tawny-colored, and adult males are often more gray-brown — useful for camouflage from predators. Thin, white, vertical stripes run down their flank, while white markings and spots color their face. A crest of long hair runs from their neck down their entire back. But most prominent are the large, spiral horns on the adult males that enable them to spar with each other. Their horns can reach nearly 4 feet tall with 2 ½ inch twists!
Greater kudus are listed as a species of Least Concern in the wild by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). They’re browsers, and their diet can include leaves, grass, roots, and fruit. Chula is also nursing from Imani.
Now more than a month old, Chula continues to flourish, and as a first-time mom, zookeepers share that Imani is doing great and is very attentive to Chula. She’s Hasani’s second calf and has been introduced to him and the other kudus and waterbucks that share the habitat.
Beginning September 11, Chula will likely be seen daily in the African Waterhole (weather permitting) — “practicing” her leaps!