Cheetahs usually give birth to three to four cubs per litter, so when Bingwa, a cheetah living in St. Louis Zoo in Missouri, gave birth to eight cubs, it became a cause for celebration. The 4-year old Bingwa, which means “champion” in Swahili, reared her own cubs at the zoo.
This is the first time a cheetah gave birth to this many cubs, according to the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, which have documented more than 430 litters.
Bingwa is already the perfect mom to her cubs, three boys and five girls, the zoo said.
“She has quickly become adept at caring for her very large litter of cubs — grooming, nursing and caring for them attentively,” said Steve Bircher, the zoo’s curator of mammals/carnivores.
The cheetah mom is on loan from the Wildlife Safari in Winston, Oregon. The cubs’ father, 9-year old Jason, is originally from White Oak Conservation in Yulee, Florida.
The birth of these cubs is worth more than exceeding the average number of cubs per litter. Cheetahs, which are the world’s fastest land mammal, is in danger of extinction. Estimates put the number of cheetahs remaining in the wild at only 7,100. The latest census conducted on cheetahs predict that there may be 53 percent less of these big cats over the next 15 years.
Cheetahs give birth about every 18 months and the rate of mortality is high. This makes replenishing the population more difficult.
According to mom.me:
“Cheetahs reach reproductive age between 20 and 24 months, with females coming into heat at any time of year. Gestation lasts approximately three months, resulting in a litter of between four and six cubs. While the mother weans the cubs between the ages of 3 and 6 months, they don’t go off on their own at that point. Cubs stay with their mother until the ages of 16 to 18 months, at which point this family unit breaks up while the mother goes off to find a mate.”
“Cheetah cub mortality rates are quite high. It’s unusual for all cubs in the litter to survive to adulthood. Most cubs die when very young, as the mother must leave her babies in search of prey. While she is out, other predators, such as lions, move in and kill cubs.”
Sea Turtles Are Turning Female Because of Rising Temperatures
The warmer the temperature is, the bigger probability that hatchlings will turn female.
Here's a fascinating tidbit about sea turtles - their gender depends on temperature. The warmer the temperature is, the bigger probability that hatchlings will turn female. Because of global warming, the number of female sea turtles are increasing dramatically.
According to the study of researchers from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, California State University and Worldwide Fund for Nature Australia,:
"Combining our results with temperature data show that the northern GBR green turtle rookeries have been producing primarily females for more than two decades and that the complete feminisation of this population is possible in the near future." ...
Million of Crabs in Christmas Island Marches Back to the Jungle After Mating Season
The tide of crustaceans crawling all over the beach is so thick it can be seen from Google Earth.
Once a year, millions of baby crabs can be seen making their way to the beaches of Christmas Island during mating season. These crabs came from the ocean and are heading towards the jungle where the adult crabs live.
The march produces a sea of crimson, a sight so amazing that it has become a tourist attraction. The tide of crustaceans crawling all over the beach is so thick it can be seen from Google Earth. Just try to imagine that!
The annual mating season of the crabs attracted tourists to Christmas Island.
Woman Performs Surgery On A Butterfly With Broken Wings – And It Worked!
Despite having no medical expertise, she was able to perform a successful wing transplant.
Monarch butterflies are perhaps one of the most interesting species, with wings that seem to be a work of art. They can only live from two weeks to five months the most. Apparently, there was a certain butterfly on a brink of death. It basically came into this world with a defected wing.
Romy McCloskey vowed to raise three monarch butterflies, but one of these creatures had a problem on its wings. Determined he could save it, Romy turned her home into a mini operating room. She even used common household items in performing a wing transplant. Yes, that's right – a wing transplant!
What is more interesting is the fact that Romy had no medical expertise whatsoever. She was a “professional costume designer and master hand embroiderer,” though. Still, she managed to make the operation successful. ...