NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) – The Virginia Zoo has welcomed three times the cuteness! Red Panda mom Masu and dad Timur are the proud parents of triplets and the public gets the chance to help name them.
The cubs, two boys and a girl, were born on June 18 and each weighed a mere five ounces. The zoo is happy to report they each weigh more than a pound now and are thriving.
Visitors will be able to catch a glimpse of the cubs later this fall, once keepers feel they are ready to safely climb the trees and other features of the panda exhibit.
For now, Masu is nursing and bonding with her cubs in a quiet, climate-controlled den.
“Our Animal Care team had a great strategy last year in moving Masu to the Animal Wellness Campus while she was still pregnant, providing privacy for her first birth experience. She took great care of her cubs last year, which is why we opted to do the same thing again this time around,” said Greg Bockheim, Executive Director of the Virginia Zoo.
The Cubs Need Names
Once again, the Virginia Zoo is asking the public to suggest names for the cubs. The auction ends at 3 p.m. on August 30. The money raised will go to the Red Panda Network. The zoo will ultimately decide on the names. Note: they are not accepting names of red pandas that have previously lived at the Virginia Zoo.
Adopt the Cubs
You can also “adopt” all three of the Red Panda cubs for $60. By symbolically adopting them, the money goes toward the care of the animals and to conservation efforts. There are a limited number of adoption packages. Click here for details.