Newquay Zoo welcomes baby mongoose
Keepers at Newquay Zoo are ecstatic after the birth of a second narrow-striped mongoose.
The birth is especially exciting as earlier this year keepers had to remove a baby mongoose from the same mother and hand rear it, following concerns about the bonding between mother and baby.
Keeper Nicole Howarth said: "We had to keep a close eye on this baby from the very beginning, just in case the mother showed the same worrying signs of disinterest that she showed with the first.
"However, we had nothing to worry about as they have bonded really well, and visitors to the zoo have been able to spot them lying out together, snuggled up and sunbathing."
Zoo Director Stewart Muir said: "There is always an element of uncertainty when an animal gives birth as there are so many factors that could affect the situation – stress, length of labour and temperament are just a few.
"We are proud of the work we do to ensure that all our animals are safe and relaxed and can successfully breed and raise their young with little interference from us. It is brilliant that second time around, the female narrow-striped mongoose is managing to bring up her baby herself."
The baby's sex has yet to be confirmed, but whether it is a boy or a girl it is part of a managed European breeding programme for the species, which is classed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
In the future the baby narrow-striped mongoose will be moved onto another zoo participating in the programme, helping to ensure the survival of the species.