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Australia's Rare Red Panda Triplets Make First Public Appearance at Symbio Wildlife Park

Apr 07, 2017 04:42 AM EDT
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What is more adorable than a red panda (Ailurus fulgens)? Three adorable red pandas!

On Wednesday, Symbio Wildlife Park, a wildlife sanctuary in New South Wales presented to the public three adorable red panda cubs. According to Huffington Post, the cubs were born on Christmas eve last year. 

Illawa Mercury reported that the zookeepers kept mum about their birth to give the cubs some time to adjust and bond with the first-time mother, Kesari.

National Geographic noted that young red pandas remain in their nests for about 90 days, during which time their mother cares for them.

Symbio Wildlife Park general manager Matt Radnidge said they are grateful that Kesari gave birth not only to one but three red pandas, citing that three cubs born in one delivery is rare.

"There has only been eight occurrences, including this, of triplets born in Australasia over the past 30 years, and this is only the third time ever in Australia," Radnidge said.

"We are extremely proud to be contributing to the breeding program in such a miraculous way, the care and dedication from our zoo keeping team has been clearly evident through the delicate process of assist feeding the cubs, and ensuring the health of Kesari," he added.

Unlike the giant panda, red panda is smaller in size. Live Science said they typically grow to the size of a house cat and weigh around 12 to 20 lbs, but they may appear longer because of their long, bushy tails, which they use to balance on trees or warm their bodies on winter.

World Wildlife Fund
describes them as elusive, but skillful and acrobatic mammals. They usually stay on trees so they are mostly found on temperate forests. Almost 50 percent of the red panda's habitat is in the Eastern Himalayas.

In total, there are only less than 10,000 red pandas in the wild, making them an endangered species. Their population decline is mostly due to habitat loss due to human activities.

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