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First steps for new Red Panda cubs born at Welsh Zoo

Two red panda cubs, a species considered to be vulnerable by the World Wildlife Fund, have been born at the Welsh Mountain Zoo in Colwyn Bay.

The twins are the second pair of cubs to be born at the Zoo. Credit: Welsh Mountain Zoo

The birth of the twins mark the second set of cubs born at the Zoo, with Keepers recently carrying out a first health check on the cubs and weighing them.

“The two cubs are in great condition and are the second pair of cubs to be born at the Welsh Mountain Zoo. We’ve only had a handful of sightings of the cubs so far, particularly in the mornings and evenings, but they are growing in confidence and will begin to forage and explore more in the coming weeks and months.

– Tom Lawrence, Red Panda Keeper
The cubs are being taken care of by Keepers at the Zoo. Credit: Welsh Mountain Zoo

Those keen to spot a Red Panda cub at home are able to log on to the webcam on the Zoo’s website www.welshmountainzoo.org to see if they can spot one of the cubs first hand.

Red Pandas are also classed as a vulnerable species on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List, with a population in the wild of 10,000 individuals.

"The Red Pandas are undoubtedly one of the most popular animals we have here at the Zoo and are incredibly cute. As Red Pandas are so threatened in the wild we are all delighted to have another pair of cubs, and it’s a very special event for us all at the National Zoo of Wales!”

– Tom Lawrence, Red Panda Keeper

FACTS ABOUT RED PANDAS:

  • They were once thought to be closely related to the giant panda, but genetics has shown they are more closely allied with the raccoon and weasel families.
  • They tend to live alone in the wild, only rarely traveling in pairs or in families.
  • They measure in at just larger than a domestic cat.
  • They mainly feed on leaves and bamboo, but occasionally snack on fruit, insects, bird eggs and small lizards, too.
  • The loss of nesting trees and bamboo in the Eastern Himalayas—the location of almost 50 percent of the red panda’s habitat—is causing a decline in red panda populations across much of their range.
The Red Panda are considered a vulnerable species by the WWF and other conservation groups. Credit: Welsh Mountain Zoo