It's been a few months since we've had a new batch of babies debut at the Los Angeles Zoo.
No offense to those nine blood-squirting giant horned lizards, but this latest crop of zoo babies has us collectively saying, "awwwwwww." The zoo has once again raised the bar for cuteness in Los Angeles (sorry, horned lizards).
Wednesday's birth announcement includes a koala joey, Peninsular pronghorn twins and a desert bighorn sheep.
The female koala was born July 6, 2010, but only now are we starting to enjoy her company. Joeys spend the first six months in their mothers' pouches. Then, for another six months, they occasionally poke their heads out to enjoy partially digested leaves. After a year, they leave the pouches for good.
On March 1, two Peninsular pronghorn were born, according to the zoo. Unlike the slow-to-emerge joeys, these guys are off and running almost immediately.
"Newborn pronghorns take their first steps within 30 minutes of birth. By the time they are 4 days old, they can outrun humans. After just a week, fawns can run faster than dogs and horseback riders over short distances," said zoo officials in a news release. "They are the second fastest land mammal and the fastest ungulate (hoofed mammal), clocking in at anywhere from 40 to 60 miles per hour."
On March 20, a female desert bighorn sheep was born at the zoo.
"This species is native to the high mountains and deserts of the south western United States and northern Mexico. Preferring to reside in places with rocky terrain and access to water, they completely avoid forested areas. Bighorn sheep can be seen in our local San Gabriel Mountains, though their population is threatened by many factors including drought, predators, disease and fires," said zoo officials in a news release.
The Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens is located in Griffith Park at the junction of the 134 and 5 freeways. Admission is $14 for adults and $9 for children (ages 2 to 12). The Zoo is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. For information, call 323-644-4200 or visit lazoo.org.