Planckendael Zoo's spotted hyena pair welcomes third cub

At Planckendael Zoo in Mechelen, hyena Luena recently gave birth to a cub as part of the European spotted hyena breeding programme. According to the zoo, the cub is doing well, but Luena is keeping her newborn well hidden in the family den.

Planckendael is involved in the European breeding programme, which aims to conserve the species. Luena and her mate, Bongo, who usually lives separately from the family, are the zoo's breeding pair. The new cub is the pair's third, following the birth of sisters Xena and Xavannah in 2022.

"The gestation period of the spotted hyena is four months, and both conception and birth are small miracles, because the hyena's birth canal is unusually long," a zoo spokesperson said. "A newborn cub is adorable, unlike the bolder adult version."

Spotted hyenas are the largest, loudest and most aggressive of all hyena species. The coat of a juvenile is very dark, with the typical camouflage spots appearing after four months.

The cub's sex has not yet been determined. Once this is known, it will be given a name. It will start with the letter Z, like all animals born in Planckendael this year.


#FlandersNewsService | The newborn spotted hyena cub at Planckendael © BELGA PHOTO HANDOUT PLANCKENDAEL - JONAS VERHULST

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ZOO Planckendael welcomes two hyena puppies thanks to European breeding programme
Visitors to ZOO Planckendael in Mechelen can now see two young spotted hyena puppies running around in the outdoor enclosure. The two are 10 days old and are the first of their kind to be born at Planckendael, thanks to a successful European breeding programme that brought together their parents Bongo and Luena.

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