The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) has revealed that the UK’s youngest polar bear cub, born at Highland Wildlife Park in December 2021, is a boy. Mum Victoria previously gave birth to Hamish, the UK’s first polar bear cub in 25 years, in December 2017.
Expert vets and keepers at the wildlife conservation charity confirmed the three-month-old cub is male during his first routine health check yesterday morning (23 February 2022), where he was chipped, vaccinated and confirmed to be in good health.
Keith Gilchrist, animal collection manager at Highland Wildlife Park said, “After watching Victoria and her cub closely on CCTV over the winter, it is very exciting to find out we have a little boy and that he is in good health. He is already becoming more confident every day and it is incredible to see him grow and develop.
“In the coming weeks we are going to be asking the public for their help in naming our newest arrival.”
Public viewing is still closed to give Victoria and her youngster lots of peace and quiet. In a few weeks, the cub will be introduced to his large outdoor enclosure, where the public will be able to try and spot him.
Keith added, “Like all the animals in our care, our polar bears play an important role in attracting and engaging thousands of visitors each year so they can learn about the threats animals face in the wild and the action they can take to help. Their power to connect with people with nature and encourage behaviour change is invaluable.
“We will be sure to keep everyone updated when the cub starts to explore outdoors.”
The cub’s dad Arktos and the park’s other male polar bear, Walker, can still be spotted in their enclosure. More information about visiting Highland Wildlife Park can be found at highlandwildlifepark.org.uk/we-are-open.