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Posted at 3:22 PM ET, 08/ 4/2010

Zoo record broken for ferret births

By Washington Post editors

The black-footed ferret was once thought to be extinct. But the National Zoo's Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal is doing its part in helping to boost the population.

Twelve litters of the ferrets have been born at the facility since May 7, including litters born to four females who had never given birth before.
In total, 50 kits, as the babies are called, were born at the facility this year; 49 survive.

The litters were also larger than usual this year, zoo officials report. Five of the litters born this year included six kits. The black-footed ferret usually has three or four kits at a time.

The most recent litter was born July 23. Check out the zoo's ferret cam and to see if you can catch a glimpse of first-time mother Thalia and her three kits.

By Washington Post editors  | August 4, 2010; 3:22 PM ET
Categories:  DC, Virginia  
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