These cute little creatures, with their captivating blue eyes, are playing a vital part in the conservation efforts to safeguard their kind.
The Novosibirsk Zoo in Siberia recently took to the Russian social media network VK.com to share a thrilling update. They announced that they had just welcomed 16 wild kittens into their zoo this month. These newborns were spread across three litters, but the exact dates of their births were not disclosed. Tatyana Pevneva, the head of the International Cooperation Department at Novosibirsk Zoo, revealed that the kittens were born to three female Pallas’ Cats (Otocolobus manul) in June. One mother had three kittens, while another had five, and the third had eight. These Pallas’ Cats have striking blue eyes that will turn green and eventually yellow as they grow older. The zookeepers and veterinarians are keeping a close watch on these charming creatures as they develop, but their future remains uncertain due to their young age.
The Novosibirsk Zoo is currently home to two delightful kittens that are having a blast playing in their enclosure. These playful little creatures belong to the Pallas’ Cat breed, which has been bred at the zoo since 1995. To support international and European conservation efforts, these kittens are sent to zoos all over the world. Thanks to the efforts of the Novosibirsk Zoo, Pallas’ Cat descendants can now be found in numerous countries, including Germany, Czech Republic, Poland, France, Switzerland, Austria, and Great Britain. Breeding Pallas’ Cats in captivity is not an easy feat, as it often results in a high mortality rate. Typically, Pallas’ Cats are native to rocky deserts and semi-arid regions that span from Central Asia to Mongolia. Unfortunately, this species is currently endangered due to habitat degradation and being hunted for its fur.
The Novosibirsk Zoo is currently home to a mother Pallas’s Cat and her two cute kittens, who have become quite the attraction for animal enthusiasts. The WWF has reported that there are only 12,000 of these felines left in the wild in Russia, making them quite a rare sight. Even in captivity, there are only 30 of them across various zoos in the country as of 2019. Although the kittens occasionally come out of their shelter, they tend to hide from strangers, including visitors. Nonetheless, the staff has observed that the young ones are gaining more confidence, so visitors may have a better chance of spotting them soon.