Girlfriend for Zet the Anteater

A girlfriend's been flown in for giant anteater at Howletts in Canterbury to keep him company!

Zet the Giant Anteater is a bachelor and has lived in solitary existence since he arrived at Howletts from Warsaw Zoo in July last year.

One year old female Fidji arrived from Beauval Zoo in France and is currently in quarantine before she can join Zet.

Keeper Shelley Ansell who cares for Zet says;

"We are incredibly excited for Zet about the arrival of Fidji - Zet is a lovely gentle soul and a firm favourite of keepers, and we all have our fingers crossed that they will pair successfully and have offspring in the future.  Like all giant anteatersZet is about the size of a german shepherd dog, a huge bristly tail and is covered with stiff, straw like hair.  We hope that Fidji will find him an attractive proposition!"

This breed of anteater is declining in the wild due to habitat loss and hunting.

Some facts you probably didn't know about the Giant Anteater:

  • Mothers carry their offspring on their backs for a considerable length of time even though their babies can gallop four weeks after birth
  • The Giant Anteater has the lowest body temperature of any terrestrial mammal (reaching as low as 32 degrees c)  
  • They can sleep for up to 16 hours a day with their tails wrapped around them to keep them warm like a blanket
  • The Giant Anteater is docile by nature and it's principal enemies are the puma and the jaguar.  These predators have to be careful in their attacks though as an embrace by the anteater's limbs can sometimes prove fatal.