DES MOINES, Iowa — The Blank Park Zoo is welcoming some babies this spring.

The Hartmann’s mountain zebra family got a little bigger with the birth of Dakota on March 11. The male foal is the first zebra born at the zoo since zebra were brought back to the zoo in 2019. Dakota is described as “quirky and independent” according to zookeepers.

A male addax calf was born on April 5 and got his name, Perkins, because Perkins Elementary students witnessed his birth while they were on a field trip.

“Addax are functionally extinct in the wild and zoos hope to one day reintroduce the addax back to their natural habitat and every addax birth helps us get one step closer to that goal,” said Anne Shimerdla, president and CEO of Blank Park Zoo.

Both Dakota and Perkins spent time behind the scenes while they bonded with their moms but can now be seen in the exhibits at the zoo.