Blog: Center for the Science of Animal Care and Welfare

Texas Blind Salamander at Brookfield Zoo

On your next visit to Brookfield Zoo take a peek at one of the most unique-looking and smallest animals at the zoo—the Texas blind salamander. They can be seen in an aquarium in the Living Coast exhibit at the Rocky Shores habitat.

posted 9/6/2018 3:34:41 PM |

Conservation Flying Company LightHawk Helps Brookfield Zoo Relocate North American River Otter

On Monday July 9 Kate, a North American river otter born at Brookfield Zoo, received a first-class trip to Calgary Zoo thanks to the conservation flying company LightHawk. The nonprofit aims to accelerate conservation through flight. A huge thanks goes to Pilot Chuck Yanke, a LightHawk volunteer who generously donated his plane and time to fly Kate to Canada. Accompanying Yanke was Julie Tromblay, also a LightHawk volunteer who was the copilot.

posted 8/15/2018 12:47:59 PM |

Animal Welfare by the Numbers

If you’ve been following our blogs or have visited our website, you’re probably familiar with the six scientists on the animal welfare research team, who work behind the scenes daily on behalf of our collection to gather and analyze data informing methods to maintain excellent animal welfare. In addition to monitoring our own collection, a pillar of the animal welfare department is to collaborate with other accredited zoos and aquariums to work together for continuous improvement. In this post I will detail some of the numbers of what it takes to accomplish all the work that we do.

posted 7/23/2018 11:38:56 AM |

Amur Leopard Cubs Make Public Debut at Brookfield Zoo

Two 3-month old male Amur leopard cubs made their public debut at Brookfield Zoo recently. The cubs, named Samson and Jilin (pronounced GEE-lin), were born on April 18. Up until now, the two had been behind the scenes bonding with their 7-year-old mom, Lisa. Currently, guests can see them during morning hours in their outdoor habitat located on the west side of Big Cats. As they get more acclimated to their new environment, they will be viewable throughout the day.

posted 7/20/2018 2:59:41 PM |

National Zoo Keeper Week (July 15-21)

Brookfield Zoo is celebrating National Zoo Keeper Week, July 15-21. Check each day for a new video proile of one our animal care specialists.

posted 7/16/2018 10:42:31 AM |

Porcupette (Baby Porcupine) Born at Brookfield Zoo

Brookfield Zoo, is getting right to the point and announcing the birth of a porcupette—a baby porcupine—born on July 2. The porcupette is the first of its species, the prehensile-tailed porcupine, to be born at Brookfield Zoo. After monitoring the mother, 5-year-old Lucia, for an extended period of time, it became clear that she was not going to provide her offspring proper maternal care, as she was not allowing him to nurse. At that time, animal care and veterinary staff made the decision to intervene and hand-rear the baby, who is thriving.

posted 7/10/2018 2:28:40 PM |

Kirk's dik-dik Calf Born at Brookfield Zoo

A male Kirk’s dik-dik was born on June 4, 2018, at Brookfield Zoo, weighing about 1.5 pounds. The Kirk's dik-kik is one of the world’s smallest antelope species. Based on the recommendation from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Kirk’s dik-dik Species Survival Plan, the calf is being handreared by animal care staff. Currently, the calf is given a milk bottle four to five times a day as well as chopped hay.

posted 7/9/2018 3:29:35 PM |

Brookfield Zoo Announces Name of Month-old Gorilla

The Chicago Zoological Society, which manages Brookfield Zoo, is happy to announce the western lowland gorilla born on June 1 is a female and has been named Ali. The 1-month-old infant and her mother, Koola, can be seen in the zoo’s Tropic Word: Africa habitat along with Koola’s two other offspring Kamba, 13, and Nora, 4; Zachary (Kamba’s son), 2; Binti Jua (Koola’s mother), 30; and JoJo (the infant’s father), 38.

posted 7/2/2018 1:04:50 PM |

Amur Leopard Cubs Born at Brookfield Zoo

Two male Amur leopard cubs were born on April 18 at Brookfield Zoo. The now 8 and 9 pound, 8-week-old cubs are doing well and bonding with their mom, Lisa, behind the scenes. The cubs recently had their first wellness exam at the Brookfield Zoo Animal Hospital. It is anticipated they will be making their public debut to zoo guests in mid-July.

posted 6/19/2018 12:53:19 PM |

Feline False Pregnancies: Using a Novel Approach to Diagnose Pregnancy  

As mentioned in a previous blog (September 2017), one of the most unique phenomenon faced in monitoring reproduction in felids are false-positive pregnancy results due to pseudo (false) pregnancies. Looking at only progesterone and estrogen isn’t enough, levels will go up indicating pregnancy, but in reality, the individual is not pregnant! False-positive results can occur from larger felids (e.g. tiger, leopard) to smaller (e.g. black-footed cat, domestic cat).  With no clear answer as to why false pregnancies occur, researchers have to find ways to still diagnose pregnancies with certainty.

posted 6/18/2018 1:24:08 PM |

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Center for the Science of Animal Care and Welfare

Read the latest exciting stories about how our experts are advancing the science of “animal-directed” care through innovative programs at Brookfield Zoo and global field efforts.


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