TWO FENNEC foxes born earlier this year at Drusillas Park have been called Ayana and Razi by keepers.
The cute canines arrived on May 15 and have been doing well alongside parents Mali and Tabari.
They are the third litter of foxes to be born at the Park in two years and the zoo team is delighted with the new arrivals.
To experience so many births in such close succession is a real achievement for Drusillas; surviving cubs are rare generally attributed to the sensitivity of the parents to any disturbance.
Zoo keepers held off naming the adorable duo immediately following their birth as they were keen to establish the sex of the cubs first.
This was difficult in the months immediately following their arrival as they were closely guarded by Mali and Tabari and opportunities were therefore limited.
Now the cubs are less dependant the keepers have been able to confirm the baby bundles as both a male and a female cub, which they have named Razi and Ayana respectively.
In the wild, fennec foxes inhabit the Sahara desert of North Africa, where they are threatened mainly due to hunting and the pet trade.
The group at Drusillas Park is part of a European breeding programme, created to ensure the survival of the species in the future.
Following the zoo’s success, Head Keeper Mark Kenward gave a presentation on 13th October at Bristol Zoo on the husbandry and breeding of fennec foxes.
The three day conference was organised by the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums; zoos often cooperate in this way in order to ensure best practice throughout the community.