by | May 6, 2021 | Article

Happy Mother’s Day 2021! As always, this is a chance to reflect on and be thankful for the mothers who have helped us grow and become the people we are today.

There are many mothers to celebrate this year, particularly those who have been busy raising their newborn calves, pups, and joeys at our Ecotourism Australia’s certified zoos and wildlife parks! Read on to see how these mums have been introducing their babies to the world.

A mother rhino and her baby grazing on grass land.

Photo: Taronga Western Plains Zoo, NSW

Mum: Bathika

Baby: Sabi Star

Location: Taronga Western Plains Zoo (Advanced Ecotourism certified)

You can now watch this soon-to-be gentle giant grow up at Green Travel Leader and Advanced Ecotourism certified Taronga Western Plains Zoo in Dubbo! Making her long-awaited public debut at the end of April, Black Rhino calf Sabi Star was alert to her new environment and onlookers, but mum Bathika gave her the comfort and direction she needed to adjust to her new environment.

Just like human mums, Black Rhino mums are vital to their calves’ development, and Taronga Western Plains Zoo’s Black Rhino keeper Hayley Brooks says Bathika is already teaching her calf how to wallow in the mud, which is used as a cooling technique under the hot sun. Sabi Star has even been seen mimicking her mother’s feeding – a great sign that she is learning the tools she needs from a wonderful mother!

Hyena mother and her young affectionately touch each other with their noses.

Photo: Monarto Safari Park, SA

Mum: Forrest

Babies: Fahari and Mahali

Location: Monarto Zoo (Advanced Ecotourism and Climate Action Leader certified)

This adorable duo can be seen roaming around Monarto Safari Park, operated and managed by Climate Action Leader and Advanced Ecotourism certified Zoos South Australia. These hyena cubs were born on the 13th of September last year, however, after five months without names, Monarto Safari Park is proudly announcing this pair as Fahari and Mahali. After receiving 900 votes from the public, it was decided that the names Fahari meaning ‘magnificent’, and Mahali meaning ‘place’ would prove an excellent fit. And how could we forget the wonderful mum to these cubs, Forrest!

Fun fact: Once their cubs are born, Hyena mothers stay with their newborns for two weeks to form a strong familial bond and to recognize each other’s voices.

A peak of a little joeys face who is hiding under her mother.

Photo: Adelaide Zoo, SA

Mum: Poppy

Baby: Quokka joey (name TBC)

Location: Adelaide Zoo (Advanced Ecotourism and Climate Action Leader certified)

Zoos South Australia’s Adelaide Zoo has also seen the arrival of a shy newborn Quokka! Quokka mothers give birth only 27 days after mating, while their joeys first face the world as tiny, pink and hairless babies. Now that this joey is about five months old and has started to poke his head out of his mother’s pouch, it won’t be long before he’s brave enough to hop around the exhibit to explore. Such a feat could not be done without the enormous help of his mother, Poppy.

Who’s your mum, and what are you thankful for her teaching you this Mother’s Day? Let us know in the comments below!

(Cover photo: Adelaide Zoo)

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