Cuteness Alert: Meet the New Animal Kingdom Babies
Have you seen the newest Animal Kingdom Babies?!
It’s been an absolutely wild year at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. In our opinion, the past calendar year at the Park has been the most monumental in the past decade. Come on, the huge 20th anniversary celebration coincided with Earth Day. Party for the Planet was celebrated on its most expansive scale to date, and Pandora’s mysterious lurehperhaps best known as “Flight of Passage”– was received by guests with a banshee-sized embrace.
New food and dining options have popped up, an all-new Holiday celebration is coming in just a few months to complete another huge year for the Park. But sometimes, it’s the little things that leave the most lasting footprints…let’s meet all of the babies (and their moms!) who were born this past year at Disney’s Animal Kingdom!
Youka and Zalika
Imagine rolling out of bed and having this good of a hair day every single day. If you’re Youka and Zalika, you’d wake up with your stripes in perfect order every morning and score yourself a few more hits of the snooze button.
The Grevy’s zebra foals were born just three months ago and have been spending quality time learning from and bonding with their moms, but we’ve got some great news for you today- passengers on Kilimanjaro Safaris now have the chance to see the new babies on the savanna, because the two young zebras have officially been introduced to the attraction!
The name derives from an Amazon warrior whose heroic personality traits leave anyone named for this ancient namesake large shoes to fill.
The name means bold, independent, and curious, and those who have spotted her roaming about on Kilimanjaro Safaris– and of course the Animal Kingdom Cast Members- have reported that she is doing a fantastic job of living up to the name! When you’re looking for her out on the savanna, look for the tiniest, feistiest little giraffe in sight…that’s Aella!
Anala and Jeda
These two little cubs caused quite the stir in the animal world. Their births marked the first time a Sumatran tiger was born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and when Cast Members discovered that their mom, Sohni, was carrying twins, the excitement level went from 100 to 1,000!
The two cubs took their time bonding with their mother in private before they were introduced to Maharaja Jungle Trek, and even though the brother and sister duo are are quite a bit bigger now than when this photo was taken, the cubs are certainly still small enough to elicit “awwwww’s!” from every guest who crosses their path.
Scarlett and Winston’s Newborn
No, the new Mandrill’s name isn’t ‘Scarlett and Winston’, but the names of this heartbreakingly adorable baby monkeys’ parents are so far the only way we have to identify the newest addition to the Animal Kingdom. The baby Mandrill was born not even a month ago, and the team at Animal Kingdom is respectfully keeping their distance and letting Scarlett bond with her new child before checking the gender.
As a result, assigning this soon-to-be vine-swinger an appropriate name. Anyone lucky enough to embark on a safari might catch a glimpse of the youngest animal currently in the Kingdom- the baby will be clinging to its mom’s belly, so keep a wary eye out!
When I rode Kilimanjaro Safaris in February- just days after Agustus was introduced to the attraction- I had low hopes of seeing him. New babies tend to hide behind their mothers, curl up into tiny secluded spaces, and, worst of all, might not want to be out in plain sight at all.
When I rounded the corner to the waters that I know play home to the hippos, my heart skipped a beat when I saw two very out-of-place Cast Members crouched in the middle of the roadway, peering down into the water. It took a minute, but the moment before I spotted him I whispered to my friend “Oh my gosh, I bet they’re looking at the new baby hippo…we’re going to get to see him!”.
I broke a Disney rule, and big one at that. Yes, I went against the cardinal “no standing” rule of the Safari, and even though my driver continually warned that he couldn’t continue until I was seated again, he never quite caught wind that perhaps I didn’t want him to start back up just yet…I wanted to see Agustus for as long as I could!
He’s certainly grown since February, but to this day, his small stature and tiny features make him an adorable addition to the Animal Kingdom’s Kilimanjaro Safaris! Well…small and tiny by hippo standards, that is! So, have you spotted any of these animals yet? Which of the babies would you love to see most? Let us know in the comments below!
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Special thanks to Maria Salerno for writing this article: Hiya pal! I am a NYC-based writer thrilled to a part of your Disney vacation planning! I’m a WDW Annual Passholder, so you can find me in the parks regularly throughout the year. In addition to being a Disney Parks loving girl, I’m also a Disney toy and merchandise collector, a runDisney enthusiast, and Disney music and movie aficionado. You can follow me on Instagram: NYCtoAP and find me on YouTube: NYCtoAP. Thanks for reading, hope to see ya real soon!