The Zoo is going NUTS over its new arrivals!
Words and Images Courtesy of the Virginia Zoo in Norfolk
NORFOLK, VA – The Virginia ZooFarm residents are getting squirrelly over their new friends, Diana and Kelapa. These two new additions are Prevost squirrels, native to Asia specifically the Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, Borneo, and the East Indies.
Female squirrel, Diana, was born May 13, 2020, and weighs approximately 13 ounces. Male squirrel, Kelapa, was born on March 29, 2019, and weighs just 1 pound. This arboreal species is also called the “tri-colored squirrel” for its unique and colorful fur pattern. The top of their body and entire tail is black, while the underpart of their body is chestnut brown. A white line separates the two colors. From nose to tip of the tail, squirrels are approximately 20 inches. They both completed a routine quarantine period and wellness exams before being introduced to one another in their exhibit at the ZooFarm.
Diana and Kelapa arrived at the Virginia Zoo as a part of the Species Survival Plan. As a breeding pair, they can have up to three litters per year consisting of one or two young on average. Life span for Prevost squirrels is 10-15 years.
Diana and Kelapa can be distinguished by their size and personalities. Kelapa is outgoing, bold, adventurous, and is slightly larger with a fluffier tail. He also tends to eat his food while hanging upside down from his hind legs. Diana, is shy, cautious, independent, and smaller in size. They both like to sleep in the wooden nest boxes, chew bamboo sticks and hide in their baskets filled with hay.
See the newest additions at the ZooFarm in their exhibit next to the yellow barn. The Virginia Zoo is open daily from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm. Advance reservations required.
About the Virginia Zoo
The Virginia Zoo, located in Norfolk, Virginia, is home to more than 700 exceptional animals representing over 150 fascinating species. Founded in 1901 and residing on 53 beautifully landscaped acres, the Virginia Zoo has demonstrated a commitment to saving and protecting the world’s wildlife by inspiring a passion for nature and taking conservation action at home and around the world. The Virginia Zoo is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and is recognized as a global leader in education, recreation, science, wildlife conservation, and animal care and welfare. For more than a century, the Zoo has connected adults, families and school children with the natural world and its wildlife. To learn more, visit www.virginiazoo.org.