ST. LOUIS — The Saint Louis Zoo has a new member!
A Somali wild ass foal named Tobias was born on July 30 to mother Tukia, who came to St. Louis from the San Diego Zoo Safari Park in 2005 and father Hirizi, who was born at the Saint Louis Zoo in 2013.
Tobias weighed 51 pounds at birth and can now be seen daily, weather permitting with his mother and two adult females in their habitat at the Red Rocks area of the zoo.
According to the Saint Louis Zoo, the Somali wild ass is a subspecies of the African wild ass, and is a critically endangered member of the horse family. They are found in small numbers in desert areas of Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia in the Horn of Africa.
There are currently only 68 Somali wild asses in North American zoos, with seven at the Saint Louis Zoo. The fact that only four other zoos in North America have bred this species makes this little foal an important addition.