London Zoo breeds rare Dove

The Socorro Dove

Rare, Socorro Dove

A rare Mexican species of dove that died out in the wild in the 1970s has been successfully bred at London Zoo.

The Socorro Dove (Zenaida graysoni) is thought extinct in the wild and was last seen in its natural habitat on Socorro Island in 1972. There is now thought to be less than 100 in captivity.

Zoo keepers at London Zoo have named the new dove Arnie, in reference to Arnold Schwarzenegger’s famous catch-phrase “I’ll be back”, because they hope that that successful captive breeding will mean Socorro doves could soon be back in the wild.

As part of the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA) breeding programme working towards reintroduction, Arnie’s descendants could end up living back in the forests of Socorro.

The Zoological Society of London’s Curator of Birds, John Ellis, said: “This is an enormous success for London Zoo and a real tribute to the hard work and expertise of our keepers.

I would like to think that this captive breeding success marks a change in the fortunes of the Socorro dove and we are delighted to be playing our part in the reintroduction programme.”

External Links:
Zoo celebrating rare dove birth
London Zoo successfully breeds ‘extinct’ Mexican dove

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