With their pointy ears peeking out from the long grass, this trio of Lynx kittens played hide and seek as they recently made their public debut at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo. The eight-week-old triplets named Ruby, Amber, and Opal, spent their first few weeks snuggled up inside with their mother, Maja, before taking their first tiny, tentative steps outside this week. And now they are big enough to venture out on their own! The playful kittens are getting bolder by the day and are often spotted perched on tree trunks from which to pounce, play fighting in the grass, and snoozing on logs.
Zookeeper Cliff Tack said: “All three kittens are doing fantastically well. Mum kept them well hidden in their den to begin with, but they’re now growing in confidence and becoming a lot more adventurous, especially with the warm weather encouraging them to come out to play.”
Known as a crepuscular species, European Lynx are most active at dawn and dusk, and the kittens are already showing signs of this behavior – with keepers spotting the cheeky trio at their most playful at the beginning and end of the day. The all-girl trio, who are parents Maja and Timo’s third litter, are a welcome addition to the European StudBook Breeding Program for Lynx. They are already showing off their distinctive pointed ears, and are just beginning to develop spotted markings on their coats which will continue to appear as they get older.
Read some Fun facts and see more pictures, after the jump:
European Lynx (lynx lynx) Facts:
- Lynx live in Russia and Scandinavia in high altitude forests with dense cover of shrubs and tall grass.
- Lynx kittens are usually born in the early spring in dens that are found under fallen tree branches, large tree roots, or in rock piles.
- Lynx can make a variety of sounds similar to those made by a housecat: mews, yowls, spits, and hisses. They can also purr.
- Black tufts of hair in the tip of their ears and short, stumpy tails are characteristic for the Lynx. Their huge, padded paws make them well equipped for walking on snow without falling through.