Brandywine Zoo Mourns the Loss of Ande the Southern Pudu
It is with heavy hearts that the Brandywine Zoo announces the passing of Ande, its adult male Southern Pudu deer. Ande was diagnosed with an atypical presentation of pudu pox – a life-threatening viral disease with severe secondary complications that effect pudu. Ande received prompt and intensive veterinary care at both the zoo’s Animal Care Center and the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine’s (Penn Vet) New Bolton Center. Despite a comprehensive treatment plan and around the clock monitoring his condition worsened, and he was humanely euthanized.
The staff of the Brandywine Zoo is deeply saddened by the loss of Ande, who was a beloved member of their animal family. Ande and his partner, Clover, had welcomed a male fawn in July. Both parents had shown immense care and dedication in nurturing their newborn.
Unfortunately, Clover and her fawn were also diagnosed with pudu pox. They were promptly removed from their habitat and received intensive veterinary care at the zoo’s Animal Care Center. The pair received weekly antiviral infusion therapy as part of the rigorous treatment plan to combat the virus and its potential life-threatening complications. Both animals were closely monitored for weeks by the zoo’s veterinary and animal care teams and have been cleared of illness.
The offspring of Ande and Clover is now almost six months old, the age male pudu reach sexual maturity. He has been identified by the AZA Species Survival Program as a genetically viable mate for a female pudu at another AZA zoo. He will not return to his habitat at the Brandywine Zoo and will be transferred soon to another accredited zoo where he will meet his match. Clover will remain in her habitat at the Brandywine Zoo.
Southern pudu, the second smallest deer species in the world, stand at a mere 14 to 17 inches at shoulder height. Sadly, their population is dwindling rapidly, with fewer than 10,000 remaining in the wild in Argentina and Chile and 45 in human care in AZA zoos. This species is listed as Near Threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species, highlighting the urgent need to protect them.
The loss of Ande serves as a poignant reminder of the fragility of animals and the challenges they face. The Brandywine Zoo remains dedicated to its mission of conservation and will continue working tirelessly to support the well-being and survival of all its animal residents.
The Brandywine Zoo, an accredited member of the Association of Zoos & Aquariums, upholds the highest standards in animal care and welfare. With its commitment to providing fun, safe, and educational experiences, the zoo aims to raise awareness about the importance of protecting endangered species, like the pudu, and preserving their natural habitats.
The Delaware Zoological Society of the Brandywine Zoo will be collecting contributions to the Zoo Conservation Outreach Group (ZCOG) in Ande’s memory. ZCOG is a non-profit organization that focuses on wildlife and habitat conservation in Central and South America including Chile where pudu are native. To donate, please go to weblink.donorperfect.com/ZCOG.