Cookie use on MRCVSonline
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive all cookies.
If you would like to forward this story on to a friend, simply fill in the form below and click send.

Your friend's email:
Your email:
Your name:
 
 
Send Cancel

Endangered wildcat kittens born at Highland Wildlife Park
Viewing areas were reopened this week to allowed visitors to get a closer look at the kittens.

Litter of four could be ‘potential lifeline for the species’

The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) has announced the birth of four wildcat kittens at Highland Wildlife Park, near Aviemore.

In a statement announcing the birth of the kittens, animal collection manager at Highland Wildlife Park Keith Gilchrist said: “We are thrilled to welcome the birth of four kittens, who were born during lockdown in May, to mum Fiain and dad Blair.

“It has been great watching them grow and it is fantastic to now be able to welcome visitors to meet them too.”

Wildcat viewing areas were reopened this week to allow visitors to get a better look at the new litter. Guests are being encouraged to wear a facemask in these areas to keep other guests and the animals safe.

The new kittens, named Strom, Eilein, Druim and Vaara were born as part of RZSS’s Saving Wildcats project, which aims to preserve this rare and threatened species by breeding and releasing wildcats into the wild.

Ex-situ conservation manager of Saving Wildcats David Barclay said: “Following a sad history of habitat loss, persecution and, more recently, breeding with domestic cats, wildcats are on the brink of extinction in Scotland, but it’s not too late.

“By bringing together the expertise and skills of national and international organisations, the Saving Wildcats project can secure a future for the Highland tiger by breeding and releasing wildcats into the wild, so every birth is a potential lifeline for the species.”

The Saving Wildcats project is being carried out in collaboration with groups such as NatureScot, Forestry and Land Scotland (FLS) and The Cairngorms National Park Authority (CNPA).

Image (c) Alyson Houston/RZSS.

Become a member or log in to add this story to your CPD history

Tickets on sale for horse welfare conference

News Story 1
 Tickets are now on sale for the 'Welfare and Performance of the Ridden Horse' conference, due to take place at Nottingham University on Saturday, 11 December 2021.

World-renowned researchers, including Prof. Hilary Clayton and Dr Sue Dyson, will deliver the latest research updates. There will also be interactive Q&A sessions throughout the day, interactive polls and a fun evening of entertainment.

Organisers say that in the event of further coronavirus restrictions, day tickets will be transferred to livestream tickets. For more information about the conference and to book your place, click here.  

Click here for more...
News Shorts
More cases of African swine fever confirmed in Germany

More cases of African swine fever (ASF) have been confirmed in wild boar in Germany.

According to Pig World, 20 outbreaks have been identified in two districts - Brandenburg, where the original case confirmed on September 10 was found, and near the town of Neuzelle, some 7.5 km away.

The finding represents a further seven cases confirmed by Germany's Friedrich-Loeffler Institute. A Central Crisis Team has been established to coordinate the response to the outbreak.