Nature park animals enjoy peace and quiet without human visitors

By Celia Agüero Pereda

Maliaño, Spain, May 3 (efe-epa).- Spain’s Cabárceno Nature Park is home to almost 1,000 animals from 130 different species which have been more calm and relaxed without the usual stream of visitors.

The semi-wild park near Santander in northern Spain has been forced to close for more than a month, with no cars driving along its network of roads.

This change has been noticed by the creatures that live there, with many now approaching the boundary fences more frequently.

Head veterinarian Santiago Borragán said they should be able to adapt when the site reopens again.

“Any antelope knows that it’s safe distance is 50 metres and will try to be 50 metres from the visitors,” he added.

“As they used to and will do in the future when we reopen the park.”

There is a team 25 staff, from caretakers to veterinarians, who have continued to take care of the animals every day during quarantine.

During this time there have been a number of new additions, including two camel calves, six bear cubs, three eland antelopes and one llama.

Camel calves Felix and Felisa were born on 14 March, the first day the park had to close its doors due to the health crisis.

The pair are being bottle fed because their mother was unable to feed them herself.

Borragán said it is quite a “spectacle” to see them running over for their bottles when they are called.

He added that the mother is still protective of her young and takes particular care to make sure the male calf is fed.

In a few weeks there will be another set of new arrivals when the native Iberian species, such as deer and mouflon, a kind of wild sheep, give birth to the next generation this spring.

When the site reopens to the public, visitors will be able to see the new inhabitants scampering through the park, following their mothers and copying their steps.

Cabárceno Nature Park is a naturalised space reclaimed from 750 hectares of a former open pit mine.

It is home to species from five continents living in semi-free conditions, which are distributed in large enclosures where one or more species coexist. EFE-EPA


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