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National Zoo Cheetah Cubs Make Adorable Debut (VIDEO)

July 25, 2012|10:47 am

Two new cheetah cubs have been born at the National Zoo and made their debut in Washington, D.C. this week.

The three-month-old cheetahs posed for a photo shoot in front of the media Wednesday morning, making their first public appearance.

On Saturday, the cubs will be available for the public to view starting at 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The baby cheetahs, which were born via emergency cesarean section in April, have been hand-raised by zookeepers.

They have not been named, yet. Tuesday, the zoo also announced that the fluffy young cubs will be named after the fastest American male and the fastest American female athletes in this year's 2012 Olympic 100-meter dash.

Born on April 23 at the Smithsonian's Cheetah Conservation Station in Front Royal, Virginia, the male and female cubs have become playful companions. The rarely-used C-section technique was not fully successful; the two cubs were the only surviving of four total offspring.

Zoo officials say they use the cheetah's tails to differentiate between the two, as a cheetah's tail is similar to a person's fingerprints with unique identifying characteristics, Yahoo News reported.

The pair of cubs are part of the zoo's larger breeding program in order to increase the number of the endangered species. An estimated 8,000 to 10,000 cheetahs live in the wild today. The National Zoo as well as zoos around the world are working to boost the cheetah population.

As part of their debut, a video has been posted on YouTube of the National Zoo cheetah cubs.

Last week, the National Zoo hosted "A Cheetah Celebration," which offered visitors views of adult and baby cheetahs as well as educational activities about the special African animals, including speaking with zoo scientists and keepers.

The event was sponsored by the African Wildlife Ambassadors, a group of Friends of the National Zoo volunteers who are working to help the zoo help African animals at the Cheetah Conservation Station.

One female cheetah and three male cheetahs (brothers) live at the Smithsonian's Front Royal facility, according to the National Zoo's official website.

It was in 2004 that the first litter of cheetahs were ever born at the National Zoo. It happened again a year later, and all cubs have since left for other zoos.

Source URL : http://www.christianpost.com/news/national-zoo-cheetah-cubs-make-adorable-debut-video-78837/