First pictures of polar bear cub born in Berlin Zoo

Knut became hugely famous in 2006 when he was rejected by his mother at birth

Liam James
Monday 18 February 2019 11:01
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The first pictures have been released of a polar bear cub born in Berlin's Tierpark Zoo in December.

The pictures were taken after the cub's first veterinary examination, which revealed the 11-week old is a female.

Her name will not be announced until the cub and her mother Tonja are ready to make their first public appearance.

Knut, a polar bear at the nearby Zoo Berlin became hugely famous in 2006 when he was rejected by his mother at birth. He was able to survive only by artificial incubation and developed a close relationship with his keeper.

It is not feared that Tonja will reject her new cub, as Tierpark director Dr Andreas Knieriem said "in the past she has proved to be an excellent mother, and this time is no exception".

Adorable video shows UK's first polar bear cub for 25 years playing with its mum

In recent years Tonja has given birth to two other cubs, though both died in infancy. Dr Knieriem said "infant mortality in polar bears is extremely high, especially within the first ten days of life. However we are all staying positive and keeping our fingers crossed for Tonja".

The pair have been living together in a birthing den where Tonja can raise her cub in privacy for the first few months.

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