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Anteaters adapting to new home in city's wildlife park

THE Shanghai Wildlife Park has imported a pair of anteaters from South America - the first time the animal has been exhibited in the city, officials said yesterday.

Both are young adults at five years old.

Park officials said it was hoped that they would mate in the city.

The male is called Zhen Zhen, and the female Ni Ni. It took a few days for them to adapt to their new environment, said park authorities. For the first 68 hours after flying in from Guyana, they were nervous and didn't have much of an appetite.

Zhen Zhen started to eat a little a day after arriving in the city, but Ni Ni wouldn't eat for three days.

"Their handlers were worried, and had to prepare special food for her," said Su Feilong, an official with the park.

Staff prepared a dish of dried ants, ground beef, boiled eggs, honey and fruits, fortified with vitamins and minerals, which finally won Ni Ni over.

The two are now living in an enclosure originally created for red pandas. The ground has been covered with wood chips to protect their soft paws.

The temperature inside is between 20 and 23 degrees Celsius - the most suitable environment for anteaters, officials said.


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