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One of the most popular species at Cornwall’s biggest Zoo has had babies, much to the delight of visitors and staff.

The breeding pair of Asian short clawed otters – father Topan and mother Jameela – have managed to produce a healthy litter of cubs. The three babies can be found in the Oriental Garden area of Newquay Zoo, alongside Owston’s civets and a wide variety of exotic birds and plants. They are fun, playful and mischievous, and visitors to the Zoo have been able to enjoy seeing the cubs pounce, jump squeak after their parents.

John Meek, Animal Collection Manager said; ‘‘It is brilliant to have three otter cubs at Newquay Zoo. They are doing really well and entertaining the visitors to the Oriental Garden with their rough and tumble antics! Habitat destruction, pollution of waterways and over fishing has meant that these otters are now classed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. It is brilliant that we have contributed to the managed population of the species.’’

Asian short clawed otters are very social, forming close bonds. A male and female will pair for life, and both mother and father will raise the cubs, with the help of any juvenile otters in the family group. They are the smallest otter in the world, and they also enjoy spending more time on land than some of the other otter species. The three cubs at Newquay Zoo – one male and two female – will eventually be moved on to other zoos to form breeding pairs.
 

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