Two twin puppies of an endangered species, the red panda, born last July in the Zagreb Zoological Garden and "baptized" this Thursday as Dudek and Regica, these days are the biggest attraction of the Zagreb zoo.
"The main role of modern zoological gardens is the protection of endangered species through captive breeding programs, "the zoo's director, Damir Skoko, told reporters during the" christening "of the offspring, female one, male the other.
Children of Popi, seven years old, and Ema, five years old, They have recently started exploring the world outside their little house, explained Innes, his caregiver.
In his first weeks they stayed very close to their mom, the main person in charge of protecting them with their affectionate delivery and attentive care.
"Ema is really an exemplary mother. It has not been necessary to intervene or help anything about puppies. He takes care of everything alone, you have to congratulate her. You have to see how he has very strong and strong pups! "Innes said.
During the first three months of his life, the little ones did not leave where they were born, but since October they began to go out and explore the garden visible to the public, They have become the biggest attraction of the zoo.
"They have already learned a lot, they progress fast and now they are very skilled in climbing trees "explained the caretaker.
Especially at dawn, the four members of the family "have fun frequently playing together, jumping over each other, running through the trees and throwing themselves jokingly on the ground, "says Innes.
The names of Dudek and Regica, inspired by the protagonists of a popular local television series, have been chosen by two prominent Croatian athletes, Martin and Valent Sinovic, Olympic rowing champions, among seven hundred proposals from citizens.
The act of "baptism" took place within the framework of a special zoo program to raise public awareness about the risk of extinction that this species runs of animals.
The Red Panda is a mammal native to Southeast Asia, the eastern Himalayas, skilled and acrobatic, active mainly in the early morning and evening, which spends its life in the trees and feeds mainly on bamboo, although it is also carnivorous and in the wild it eats mice, insects or chickens.
Despite his name, is not related to the Pand Beara, but it is an animal belonging to the family of the victims, like raccoons and coatis.
The arrival in the world of Regica and Dudek is the result of a love story, which is not always the case in the case of captive mating, said zoo educator Tomislav Krizmanic, in charge of awareness programs on the life of animals.
"Sometimes there is no 'chemistry' between the female and the male, and nothing happens, "he said.
In this case, those responsible had to try several females until Popi, a native of Zagreb, fell in love with Ema as soon as it arrived from Germany, said the expert.