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A big warm welcome to our new arrival Laña!

Posted on: 28 May, 2024

Red river hogs are the most colourful member of the pig family found across west and central Africa and are also referred to as ‘tufted pigs’ due to their long, white whiskers and tufts found on the ears.

We have recently welcomed a new female red river hog to Bristol Zoo Project, Laña (pronounced Lanya). She is four years old and arrived from Africa Alive in Suffolk, as a companion for our male red river hog Ekundu.

Laña is named after the river 'Rio Laña' which is a tributary to the main river that runs through Monte Alén National Park in Equatorial Guinea, where we run a conservation programme. Although classed as of Least Concern by the IUCN, which means they’re not in danger of extinction in the wild, red river hogs are one of the most hunted species for bushmeat in their native Central Africa. They are currently the only mammal species at Bristol Zoo Project that can be found in two of our conservation project sites in Africa – Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon.

To ensure that Laña settled in smoothly, she was kept separate from Ekundu for a couple of days, during which time the pair displayed signs of great intrigue towards each other through vocalisations.

After a week, the pair were initially mixed under keeper supervision for four hours in the paddock, before being separated again. With a very positive first meeting, we continued to supervise the mixing of the pair until we felt Laña was confident in Ekundu’s company full-time.

Red river hogs are part of the European Ex-situ Programme (EEP) for conservation breeding, and with all the signs looking positive, we hope that the two will successfully breed in the future.

Our Animal Team worked tirelessly to ensure that Laña settled in well and she was supported in her adjustment to the new habitat.

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