Sunday 19 November 2017

Stop what you're doing right now and look at these adorable baby cheetahs

By Taylor Heyman

Ten cubs are joining the ranks at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute.

A zoo has revealed two litters of cheetah cubs born within a week of each other and they are super cute.

Twelve cubs were born at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia, to two different mothers. Unfortunately two of the cubs died.

The cubs made their debut on Wednesday with their mothers Miti, seven, and Happy, three. The father of Miti’s cubs is six-year-old Nick; Happy bred with 10-year-old Alberto.

The birth of so many cheetah cubs is rare.

“The average litter size is three, so this time we’ve got an incredible pile of cubs,” said Adrienne Crosier, SCBI cheetah biologist and manager of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Cheetah Species Survival Plan (SSP), which matches cheetahs across the population for breeding.

The Institute has only 12 species and creates an environment which, it says, “contributes to the survival of threatened, difficult-to-breed species with distinctive needs, especially those requiring large areas, natural group sizes and minimal public disturbance”.

The Institute will be keeping an eye on the little cubs using CCTV in their den. They’ll have their first veterinary exam when they are around six weeks old.

Press Association

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