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SNZCBI welcomes 6 new kits to Front Royal

The Smithsonian National Zoo Conservation and Biology Institute (SNZCBI) of Front Royal announced the arrival of a litter of endangered Black Footed Ferrets.

The litter of 6 were born on May 11 and are being monitored on a Black Footed Ferret Cam that is available to the public through this link.

Carnivorous keepers at the institute will monitor the litter behavior by camera for a short time.

After about 4 days the animals are examined closer to determine their overall health and development.

After approximately 10 days a thorough examination will determine the sex of the six.

This is the second litter for one year old Aristides and the 2-year-old male Thanos.

At birth Black Footed Ferret kits are born with eyes closed and weigh less than 10 grams with a thin layer of white fur over their bodies.

The kits will open their eyes after a little over a month and after 50 days they should venture out.

The institute is equipped with a tunnel system that mimics the Black Footed Ferret’s natural prairie homes.

The Black Footed Ferret is North America’s only native Ferret and thought to be extinct until a colony was discovered in Wyoming in 1981.

Through conservation efforts approximately 750 ferrets have been reintroduced into the wild.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

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