Amur Adolescent Tigers’ Happy Youth

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At the Sedgwick County Zoo in Kansas brother and sister Amur (or Siberian) tigers are well on their way to adulthood as they come to their first birthday. At 1 year old they are only one quarter of the way to the typical mating age for these tigers – 4 years. However, they are already appearing large and in charge, growing rapidly from their days as cubs. A few photos included below show them as cubs a few months after being born, quite a change! At the zoo they are getting steady and nutritious meals on a regular schedule helping them grow strong and healthy, something that might be a little tougher out there in the wild. After 3 years the male should weight near 500 pounds while the female should be around 260. Some mature males have weighed more than 700 pounds. A litter size of 2 like this brother and sister pair is common but it is possible that as many as 6 are born together. In the wild they would be found in the harsh cold environments of China, Russia and Korea. They can travel long distances in their range and any animals in the area better watch out, even brown and black bears are occasionally preyed upon by these large tigers.

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Saiga Antelopes Look Like Adorable Star Wars Characters!

baby-saiga-antelopeA critically endangered species that originally had a range that spread from the Eurasian Steppe all the way to North America, the Saiga Antelope is now only found in Russia, Kazakhstan, and Western Mongolia. However, when you do come across a Saiga, you’re in for a real treat, because their calves look like adorable little aliens! Used to filter dust in the summer and heat up frigid air in the winter, this antelope’s ultra flexible nose is its most distinctive feature, and reminds most people of something they’d see in “Star Wars” or on the SyFy Channel. Although they’re out of this world cute, Saiga calves are just like many other babies of many other species, born after about 150 days of gestation in litters of just one or two, and living on a diet (after weening from its mother’s milk of course) of grass, lichens, herbs, and shrubs. Although there are less than 50 thousand specimens of this particular and peculiar antelope left in the world, the remaining members still take part in a migration season that is considered to be one of the most spectacular sights in all of nature. Tens of thousands of Saiga migrate together every summer, combining individual herds of only 40-50 members to create one huge group filled with love and adorable babies! Due to their low population numbers, the Saiga are protected by various conservation and re-population efforts. With any luck, we will see the Saiga population thrive someday, so that we can appreciate them for years to come.

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White-Faced Saki Monkeys: More Cute Than You Can Fit In A Sack!

saki-monkey-babyWe’re not going to lie folks, white-face Saki Monkeys grow up to be kind of scary looking, but when they’re babies, they’re pretty adorable. Natives of Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname, and Venezuela; these monkeys are born after 20-21 weeks of gestation and nurse for an additional 23 weeks after that. They often can be found in the tree canopies of these countries, preferring a tropical environment of the rainforest, and often grow up to weigh less than 4 pounds and stand only about 20 inches tall. They live primarily on a diet of berries, and have been observed to live up to 35 years in captivity, so the adorable baby in these photos (taken at a zoo in Miami) will probably have a long and fun life of playing in his habitat. They sleep in an adorable coil position (like kittens!) and are known to mate for life; they’re love monkeys! As with all wild animals, they shouldn’t be hugged if you see one, but it probably wouldn’t hurt to give a baby saki monkey a friendly wave next time you’re at the zoo! Make sure you say “hi!” during the day though, because much like humans, these mammals like to be active in the day time and sleep at night.

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Baby Water Deer Are Dripping With Cute

baby-water-deerIt’s hard to believe that a creature that will someday look like a vampire is extremely adorable, but it’s true. How do we know? We know because we’ve seen baby Water Deer, and those little natives of China and Korea are just little bundles of cute. These unfortunately endangered creatures are found in places like the lower reaches of the Yangtze River and in the Korean demilitarized zone, living on the land alongside rivers, on mountains, in swamps, and in open fields. Even as babies, these deer, who eventually grow prominent enough tusks (elongated canine teeth that it has independent muscle control over) to be referred to as “Vampire Deer”, are extremely good swimmers, who have been known to swim for several miles to reach remote islands and food sources. Water deer are born in groups of up to seven after about six to seven months of gestation, and have a typical life span of ten to twelve years. Baby water deer are born in open areas, but are usually rushed by their mother to concealing vegetation, where they will live for about a month. Fawns (baby deer) will occasionally come out of hiding to play with each other, but generally remain in hiding until they are truly equipped to live out in the world. In order to preserve the species existence, there are numerous conservation efforts currently under way in hopes of keeping the population thriving.

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Klipspringers: “Rock Jumpers” Will Jump Into Your Heart

klipspringer-cuteNamed after the Afrikaans word for “rock jumper” due to its ability to move freely through rocky and mountainous terrain, the Klipspringer also happens to be one of the cutest babies in the animal kingdom. Adorably, baby klipspringers are known as “lambs”, and they’re born after six months of gestation as a singular baby. They’re usually born in the spring or summer, and they are sent off to live on their own by the time they turn one. They like to live in groups once they reach independence, and after leaving home they will start their own families. They can be found being super cute in most of Southern Africa, and will be a little over thirty-five pounds in weight when they’re fully grown. As they get older, they maintain their cuteness, but also grow horns so that they can defend themselves from predators and protect their families. They look kind of like teddy bears when they’re lambs, and this makes them especially adorable. However, you shouldn’t hug them because they’re wild animals. Klipspringers are currently in no danger of extinction, so you’ll be able to appreciate them, from afar, for years to come.

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Lorises Have Infants Too!

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A “Loris” is actually any one of ten species of primates native to the forests, swamps, and garden areas of India, Southeast Asia, and Sri Lanka. This unfortunately endangered group of mammals are known for their interesting look and for having adorable babies that are known as “infants”, just like humans! When lorises reach their adult size, they range from about 10 to 15 inches long and 9 ounces to 4.6 pounds in weight, but when they’re born they’re all tiny little bundles of cute! They’re almost always born as single infants, with twins occasionally occurring, but never triplets or more. In captivity, these little guys typically live between 15 and 20 years, and they often attract crowds at zoos because of their humanly qualities and their habit of always sleeping in an adorable ball. Baby loris are even more cute because their giant eyes make them look like puffy little stuffed animals. Unfortunately, you should never pet a loris, no matter how cute they are, because they have a small patch of poison on their elbow that they can lick before nipping at something they consider a predator. For this reason, they make bad pets, but they should still be preserved and appreciated from afar, because lorises of all ages are awesome!

baby-loris-infant Pygmy Slow Loris or Lesser Slow Loris (Nycticebus pygmaeus) baby clinging on to zoo worker's finger, native to Asia baby-loris-infant-cute-pics baby-loris-infant-pictures

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Baby Yaks Have Our Backs!

baby-yak-picturesWe’d like to begin this article with an apology folks, because we’re very sorry…that we never knew how adorable baby yaks could be! Native to the Himilayan Region of Central Asia (from Tibet to Mongolia and Russia), and unfortunately vulnerable to extinction, yaks are found in both domestic (where they’re used to pull carts and farm implements) and wild populations, with the wild groups being a bit more shaggy and larger in size. Many peopel think that baby yaks aren’t cute because “they stink”. But the truth is that yak’s wool is odor resistant, so if you ever really wanted to keep a yak as a pet, you’d be safe from catching a case of the stinkies! Mama yaks have a typical gestation period of 257 to 270 days, and give birth to just one calf, usually between May and June. So if you decide to go out and make friends with some baby yaks, you should plan their surprise parties for the late Spring! Like we said before, these adorable wooly beasts are currently listed as “vulnerable to extinction”, but conservation efforts have been put in place to protect them and ensure that we can appreciate them for generations to come!

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Posting Pictures Of Prairie Pups Is Pretty Perfect!

prairie-dog-pups-cute-picsAnd you thought regular dog pups were cute! Folks, there’s no two ways about it: Prairie Dog pups are basically tiny little furry and adorable humans, just look at them interacting with each other! Native to the grasslands of North America, these little rodents are known to live in large groups of family units that span hundreds of acres. Guess what they call these large groups…towns! These towns consist of many individual burrows, and inside these burrows you’ll find adorable prairie pups! The babies spend the first six weeks of their lives inside the burrow nursing from their mother, while their father does his part by foraging and protecting the burrow. There’s a ton of debate over whether these little creatures communally raise their young, or whether there’s fierce competition between parents for resources. Some say that they’ve observed mothers to nurse young that’s not their own, so even if there is some prairie parents out there who don’t have the best intentions, there are others who just want to help everyone! Prairie dogs are primarily herbivores, but will sometimes feed on insects, and are fully grown and ready to fend for themselves by about 5 months old. Prairie dogs are currently in no danger of extinction, so you have plenty of time and opportunity to appreciate these little guys and gals being adorable!

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Baby Gorilla Arrives In Unusual Way

baby-gorilla-c-sectionAnytime a baby animal is born it’s an event for us here at the zoo, but when a baby arrives to world in a special way, it’s an even bigger deal. That’s the case with this as-yet unnamed baby gorilla that was born at the San Diego Zoo recently. The young lady is a rare lowland gorilla, and she was removed from her mommy via c-section after twelve hours of labor! Four hours is very long for a gorilla, so when mama Imani (18 years old) was giving birth for three times as long, it became apparent to veterinarians at the zoo that the baby had to be removed surgically. She was born with a collapsed lung and a wicked case of pneumonia, but thanks to the great doctors at the zoo, she’s in stable condition and had been allowed to go back to her mother’s care. The team in San Diego is still going to keep a close eye on the sickly little ape, but she’s looking like she will make a full recovery! She was born tiny and sick, but someday she will be almost six feet tall and four hundred pounds! Her handlers better get their hugs in now before she’s too big, because she’s already strong enough that they’re having some trouble doing her exams. We’ll keep an eye on her for you and let you know how she grows up, and if they ever give the little one a name; our vote is for “Ape-ril”!

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Arctic Foxes Will Warm Your Heart

baby-arctic-fox-picsNative to the Arctic regions of the Northern Hemisphere, the Arctic Fox, also known as the “Snow Fox”, is responsible for making some of the cutest pups in the animal kingdom. These pups are basically tiny little adorable ninjas, known for their ability to blend in to their surroundings. In the winter when the snow in their environment is at its most plentiful, they have white coat that makes them invisible to predators. However, when the snow starts to melt and they need to better blend into the dirt and forest foliage, their coat turns more of a brown color. Arctic fox cubs are born in litters of up to fifteen babies are a two to three month gestation period, almost always in the beginning of the summer. They spend their first few months living in their den with mama, protected by the network of tunnel, growing stronger until they’re ready to be independent during the long and cold winter. Arctic foxes have been known to sometimes be kept as pets, but are very hard to domesticate. So if you decide to move to the Arctic and want something adorable to cuddle with, you might be able to get your hands on one of these super cute babies!

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