The iciest heart could melt at the announcement that a rare white lion cub has been born at a Mexican zoo.
The blue-eyed lioness cub, called Nieve (which means ‘snow’), was born in the Altiplano Zoo in Tlaxcala, Mexico, back in October, but made her first public appearance this week.
The cub is reported to be healthy with a ‘bright and playful’ attitude, but with less than 300 white lions worldwide she is part of a rare and endangered species – according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)’s Red List.
At just under two months old she already weighs 5kg (11lbs) and from nose to tail is only 35cm long – though she has got a lot of growing to do yet.
Nieve the white lion cub is reported to be healthy with a ‘bright and playful’ attitude. Credit: CEN
Nieve is the zoo’s lion family’s seventh cub to be born and the fourth born in captivity.
Due to the survival rates of the species – not to mention its rare status – the white lion cub was fed every four hours and was constantly monitored by zoo experts. In order to protect her from getting ill and disease she had been fully inoculated.
Nieve is just one of several baby animals born as part of Altiplano Zoo’s breeding programme which was set up in order to increase the number of animals from endangered and at risk species’, and also claims to offer the best standard of living for the animals.
Nieve is just one of several baby animals born as part of Altiplano Zoo’s breeding programme. Credit: CEN
People can head to the zoo to watch Niave frolic and grow until 6 January – but she will be exhibited more often after February when she’s a bit bigger.
Altiplano Zoo seems to be the place for the White Lions to thrive as it was only earlier in the year when the Zoo presented two cubs to the public that were born in March.
Cesar Toriz Hernandez, the zoo’s director, told ABC the cubs’ mother had rejected them, so they had to be formula fed from a bottle in the early months of their lives.
It may seem like an incredible responsibility to place on the shoulders of these unsuspecting young cubs, but the hope is that they will help secure a future for their species.
Featured Image Credit: CEN