MADISON (WKOW) - Henry Vilas Zoo has a new red panda and his name is Lum . He comes to us from the Cincinnati Zoo and joins Sha-Lei, another red panda that's been at our local zoo for the last couple of years.
Zookeepers are hoping the two will mate in the next few months and have cute little babies by Summertime. They say so far, things are headed in that direction.
"They are getting along very well so far," said Zookeeper Jennifer Zuehlke. "Sha-Lei is the boss which is a good thing. Lum is being a very nice gentleman. They had a couple days of play and deciding who was in charge and finding out whose space was whose and now they are very comfortable with each other and have a very relaxed relationship."
There are two other new arrivals to the zoo, but they are still in quarantine: Steve the orange-rumped agouti, a rodent found in the rainforests of Mexico and South America who comes to us from a zoo in Great Bend, Kansas. And the other animal is Hattie, a female Malayan tapir. It's a distant relative of the horse and rhinoceros. Zookeepers say she won't be on exhibit until after Spring when it gets warmer outside.
As for the red pandas, despite how incredibly cute they are zookeepers say they can be dangerous. We got up close, but didn't touch. They've got sharp claws and a strong teeth to eat all that bamboo.
MADISON (WKOW) - The Henry Villas Zoo has three new animals on its grounds: a red panda named Lum, an orange-rumpled Agouti named Steve and a Malayan tapir named Hattie.
Zoo officials have big plans for the red panda. Sabrina Hall shares what they are tonight on 27 News at 5 and 6.