Cheetah cubs turn one

ZSL Whipsnade Zoo’s six cheetah cubs celebrated their first birthday in style – as keepers gave them a party they could really get their paws into.

Presents packed full of meaty treats were given to the sextuplets, along with a colourful cardboard cake – but like typical youngsters their preferred play things were the empty boxes and discarded wrapping paper!

The gifts were all part of the one-year-old cub’s enrichment programme, designed to keep them active and spark their natural curiosity and playful natures.

Zookeeper Rosie Scott said: “It’s not often we get to celebrate six birthdays in one day, so we wanted to do something special for the cubs. They love investigating new things and had great fun working out how to reach the food inside their presents.”

Cheetah licking birthday present

The cubs are the second litter of Northeastern African cheetahs to be born at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo and are providing a valuable rearing experience for mum, Dubai, of this threatened species.

They were born two years after Dubai gave birth to her first cubs, which were the very first litter of Northeastern African cheetahs ever born in the UK.

Book zoo tickets

More news from ZSL

Asian elephant Sam during weigh-in

Keepers have carried out a huge scale operation as they encouraged thousands of animals to step onto the scales for the Zoo’s annual weigh-in.

Elephants at Whipsnade

Elephant enthusiasts are invited to a weekend of jumbo joy at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo with Elephantastic on 17 and 18 September

Atlas moth at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

Giant moths with no mouth parts and a foot-long wingspan have successfully bred for the first time at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo’s new Butterfly House.