Longleat Safari Park names rare cheetah cubs

Longleat keepers have announced that Poppy and Winston are the names chosen for the newest additions to the safari park.

The pair of cheetah cubs born at Longleat Safari Park in Wiltshire are a first for the wildlife attraction, which has been celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.

The cheetah is officially classified as ‘Vulnerable’ on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species which means it is likely to become ‘Endangered’ unless the circumstances threatening its survival and reproduction improve.

The births, which come almost five years after cheetahs first arrived at Longleat, are particularly welcome as the cubs are part of the European Endangered Species Programme.

• Elsewhere, keepers at Woburn Safari Park in Bedfordshire have been supervising the introduction of a new African crested porcupine at the Desert Springs enclosure in Animal Encounters.

The 10-year-old male porcupine, Houdini, has joined the park from the Birmingham Nature Centre to be paired with Noku, Woburn’s female African crested porcupine.

It is hoped the match will eventually result in the breeding of ‘porcupettes’ (baby porcupines) by next summer.