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The red panda has a mate; the Butterfly Garden is now open July 27, 2020

A new little male panda has arrived at the Budapest Zoo, and you can also visit the Butterfly Garden. Meanwhile, visitors can also see plenty of little animals, puppies, kids and chicks, and some new animals that have not yet been seen here.

Now in particular, there are many sights waiting for visitors to the Budapest Zoo and Botanical Garden. Lots of baby animals were born in the past period, such as at the endangered Asian wild dogs, the Greater flamingo, the Northern bald ibis threatened with extinction, and even tapirs, the Bactrian camels, the Prairie dogs and black swans, and growing young animals, pups and chicks may be seen in many other animal enclosures.

There are also newly arrived animals that have not been shown here before; for example the Parma wallaby, which was long thought to be extinct, and the takin, whose cultural-historical curiosity is that the Golden Fleece that appears in Greek mythological stories can probably be traced back to this animal.

A new red panda male has arrived
Zoo professionals have carried out extensive matchmaking work for our red panda, also known as Ailurus fulgens, in recent months. As a result, next to the almost ten-year-old female Aurora, who has been living in Budapest for years, a new male recently arrived from one of the German zoos. The animal, called Bendegúz, reached its first year of life last month, meaning he is still quite young, as males of this species tend to reach sexual maturity around the age of one and a half.

Red pandas, which live in the heart of Asia (mostly in mountainous habitats) and are rare in their homeland, have been housed at the Budapest Zoo since 1990, and they have been successfully bred several times over the past three decades. Experts are confident that, in time, the union of Aurora and Bendegúz will also result in a cub. By the way, the female had previously raised one offspring.

Visitors are welcome again in the Butterfly Garden
From 11 July, i.e. this Saturday, the Butterfly Garden will be open to the general public. This seasonal showcase of the Budapest Zoo is usually open from the end of May or early June to the end of September. This year, however, due to the coronavirus epidemic and its aftermath, the butterfly season could only begin now.

More than four hundred specimens of 19 colourful tropical butterfly species can be seen in the 1,200 cubic-meter airspace of the 240-square-metre Butterfly Garden, and the audience can literally walk amongst the butterflies, just as if they were in one of the tropical habitats of Central and South America. The species presented are not only spectacular, but also characterised by many other curiosities. Male Julia butterflies (Dryas iulia), for example, satisfy their mineral needs in nature by absorbing the tears of caymans or turtles using their haustellum. The Peleides blue morpho (Morpho peleides) uses its receptive beauty to make its attackers insecure, and in its caterpillar stage it is also prone to cannibalism.

Butterflies are worth observing not only in flight but also during feeding, such as when sucking the juices of sweet fruits, half-cut bananas or oranges. However, in addition to fruit, they also get artificial nectar (by the way, one of the important components of this mixture is none other than good Hungarian acacia honey), and they also visit the flowers in the Butterfly Garden, such as the common lantana (Lantana camara).