This is the moment a tiny antelope newborn comes face to face with its amazed fans in its first public appearance.
The dik-dik calf – looking just like Disney’s Bambi – wobbles uncertainly on its hooves as it walks around the enclosure with its mother.
Other animals at Bioparc Valencia in Spain turn their heads for a better look, but keep a respectful distance.
The young Kirk’s dik-dik (Madoqua kirkii) belongs to the smallest species of antelope in Africa.
Local media reported on 30th September that the birth is part of an international conservation program aimed at boosting species numbers.
Kirk’s dik-diks can be found in savannah-like areas in southwestern and eastern Africa and are included in the ICUN’s Red List, despite the fact that numbers are stable.
This is because the adorable antelopes are hunted for their delicate hides, which are used to make fine suede gloves, according to a statement Newsflash obtained Bioparc Valenica.
The grey and white-bellied antelopes measure between 30 to 40 centimetres tall, 55 to 72 centimetres long and weigh less than a kilogramme, with males weighing a mere 560 to 680 grammes and females weighing between 725 to 795 grammes.
This means that an entire Kirk’s dik-dik is required to make a single glove, according to the zoo park.
The tiny antelopes are also characterised by their large, pointed ears and pig-like, mobile snouts which can move in any direction and are used to lower the dik diks’ body temperatures.
The newborn antelope, whose sex has yet to be determined, is the second Kirk’s dik-dik calf to be born at the Valencian zoo and is currently being cared for by its devoted parents under the supervision of the Bioparc technical team.
The young calf’s sibling, a female born in 2020, has been separated from her parents, as she would be in nature, and will be transferred to another zoo once she reaches adulthood, according to the statement.
Bioparc Valencia is a 10-hectare zoo park specialising in African wildlife.