Just days after an Asian lion from Sweden took his first steps in the Israeli sunshine at Jerusalem’s Biblical Zoo, the Ramat Gan Safari welcomed Scandinavian new arrivals of its own — two giant anteaters.
The anteaters, a mother-and-daughter pair, were imported from Denmark to Ramat Gan after a drawn-out search for a potential mate for Termite, a male anteater and longtime safari resident whose mate died several years ago.
Termite, who was described by the safari staff as a particularly shy anteater, became the safari’s sole specimen after his mate Bunya passed away and their offspring, Bella, was transferred to a zoo in the UK.
The safari staff then embarked on a search for a female anteater who would be able to alleviate Termite’s loneliness.
After several years, their search led them to a zoo in Copenhagen, Denmark, where they found a three-year-old female giant anteater. She was a perfect match, but there was just one problem: she had given birth several months previously.
Not wanting to separate mother and daughter, the Israeli staff decided to bring them both to Ramat Gan.
The pair spent four months adjusting to life in their new home, enjoying a steady diet of apple, pear and papaya shakes (in the wild, giant anteaters eat 30,000 ants and termites per day) and going for daily constitutionals in the yard — which often involved clearing the area of any unsuspecting ants, naturally.
The females, which have yet to be named, will be introduced to Termite in the coming months, the safari staff said in a statement.