New Baby Donkey is Rarer than a Panda...
The Grand-Noir-du-Berry is an endangered breed of large donkey found in the ancient Berry region of central France. It was bred for light draft work in the vineyards, for pulling barges on the regions canals, and for breeding mules. Mechanisation almost led to the breeds extinction, and today only a tiny number remain in the hands of breeders dedicated to its preservation. The more famous Baudet-du-Poitou suffered the same fate, but has been saved through decades of careful breeding following an initiative started by the French Government.
The Grand Noir is much rarer than its famous cousin, and in 2016 only 13 foals were born across all the studs. We are delighted that the first foal to be born to the new females we imported from France, has been born at Hamerton Zoo Park yesterday.