Critically endangered addax antelope calf makes its debut at Zoo Miami

The male calf was born on December 20th and weighed just over 14 pounds at birth after of a pregnancy of around eight months.

The critically endangered antelope was sheltered from public view with its first mother to ensure appropriate bonding before being introduced to the habitat.

There are only several hundred addax left in the wild, making them one of the most critically endangered animals in the world. While it once was widespread in areas of the Sahara desert in North Africa, the population today has been reduced to a small portion of the Sahara in Niger.

Poaching is a significant danger, as is the destruction of their habitat due to petroleum exploration.

Addax are nomadic, and they live in herds with averages of 5-20 members. They have broad, flat hooves for walking on sand, produce dry feces and concentrated urine, which allows them to get their sustenance from the plants that they eat.

In addition, their white to tan color allows them to blend in, unlike their desert surroundings, where they’ll remain cool by reflecting warmth.

Preparing addax populations under human care as an insurance strategy against an uncertain future in the wild is improved by carefully controlled zoo breeding programs. Given the educated breeding populations set up in zoos like Zoo Miami, the critically endangered addax population is given a reliable future.

With information from CBS News

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