PICTURES: World’s largest cow gives birth to tiny calf

Gaur calf, Miumiu, with mum, Mia at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo (c)ZSL
Gaur calf, Miumiu, with mum, Mia at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo (c)ZSL

Baby gaur calf born at Whipsnade Zoo to half-a-tonne mother.

A half-tonne gaur – the world’s largest species of cow – has given birth to a tiny calf at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo.

The baby gaur, which zookeepers have named Miumiu – meaning ‘beautiful’, was born to mum Mia in the early hours of October 11, and although yet to have her first health check, keepers estimate she is standing at just over 60cm tall and weighs around 35kg – about the same as a Labrador.

After keeping a doting eye on the calf in the few hours following her birth, zookeepers were delighted to observe the newborn – under the watchful gaze of her devoted mum – take her first wobbly steps.

Miumiu is an important addition to the European endangered species breeding programme, and brings the gaur herd number at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo to five.

ZSL Whipsnade Zoo keeper Donovan Glyn said: “The new gaur calf is doing really well and making steady progress - which we’re so pleased to see.

“Miumiu was quick to take her first few steps and despite being a bit wobbly initially she is getting more confident on her feet by the day, with the odd helpful nudge from mum.

“We are very excited to watch her grow as large as her mum and the rest of the gaur herd at the Zoo.”

Gaur, also known as seladang or Indian bison, are classified by the IUCN’s Red List of Threatened Species as Vulnerable and due to threats including hunting and habitat destruction, the species’ population is in decline.

Visitors to ZSL Whipsnade Zoo can see the new gaur calf and the rest of the herd this October half term. Find out more at www.zsl.org.