Name the Bongo Calf at the Louisville Zoo

Male Bongo Calf Born at Louisville Zoo: Naming Contest Details (Media Release)

CONTACT: Kyle Shepherd
Direct: 502-238-5331  |  Media Only: 502-744-5639

The Louisville Zoo welcomed a male bongo calf in the early hours of Sunday, May 19. Mother Isabelle, 9, and calf are doing well. Both have joined the other bongos in rotation on exhibit next to giraffe and addax yards. 10-year-old bongo Watson sired the 50 lb. male calf.

The Louisville Zoo guests will get the chance to name the new bongo calf in a contest that begins June 3. Guests are encouraged to submit names via the website at from June 3 – 9. Of the submitted names three will be chosen by the zookeepers and placed on the Zoo’s plaza from June 14 – 23 for guests to vote on while they visit the Zoo. Visitors will vote by dropping coins into the naming kiosk for their desired name. All proceeds support the Zoo’s efforts to provide excellent care for animals and important conservation and education programs.

A complete list of the official rules can be found at

The breeding was a part of the As of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP) which works to improve the genetic diversity of managed animal populations.


Bongos are the largest of the forest antelopes and are considered by many to be the most beautiful. In addition to the deep chestnut color of their coats, bongos have bright white stripes on their sides to help camouflage them from their enemies. Bongos are listed as near threatened on the IUCN Red list of Threatened Species.


The Louisville Zoo, a non-profit organization and state zoo of Kentucky, is dedicated to bettering the bond between people and our planet by providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for visitors, and leadership in scientific research and conservation education. The Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).

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