'Vulnerable' peccaries find new home at zoo

The Dartmoor Zoo in Devon, England, has recently acquired a group of seven white-lipped peccaries, a vulnerable species of pig-like animals, from Dudley Zoo and Castle. This arrival marks a significant milestone for the zoo, as it is the first time they have included peccaries or any pig-like species in their collection. The white-lipped peccary is considered vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), with a global population of approximately 5,000.

Native to Central and South America, peccaries can be found in various habitats such as tropical rainforests, wet and dry grasslands, and mangroves. However, they have been facing declining numbers due to agricultural expansion, deforestation, and hunting. The latest IUCN assessment shows a nearly 30% decrease in their population in the past three generations.

David Gibson, the chief executive of Dartmoor Zoo, expressed his excitement about this new addition, stating that it represents their commitment to focusing on conservation-dependent species. The mixed group of three males and four females will reside in a newly refurbished enclosure at the top of the drive, next to the zoo’s Turkey oak.

Richard Brown, curator at Dudley Zoo and Castle, expressed delight over the move, stating that they were fortunate to have housed white-lipped peccaries for the past 15 years but were looking forward to following their progress in their new home at Dartmoor Zoo.

The public can follow updates about the white-lipped peccaries and other news from Dartmoor Zoo through various social media platforms such as BBC Devon on X (formerly Twitter), Facebook, and Instagram. Those with story ideas can send them to [email protected].

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