FINGERS are crossed at the Highland Wildlife Park for the UK’s first polar bear cub in 25 years.
Because there is no test to tell if a polar bear is pregnant there is no way of knowing if all the weight Victoria has been piling on is because she is about to give birth.
However, this is a crucial time if she were to be carrying cubs.
Last year Victoria – the UK’s only female polar bear – put on a staggering 440 pounds in weight only not to be pregnant. But this time it is hoped the extra weight may produce a little polar bear.
Staff at the park in Kincraig have kept Victoria well fed on fish and vegetables and are treating her as if she is about to give birth.
She is currently out of public view and it is believed she is pregnant after mating with Arktos – one of the two male polar bears at the zoo – last spring.
Polar bears usually give birth to twins, with new-born cubs being around the same size and weight as an adult guinea pig.
“As happened last year, we have given Victoria access to a dark and quiet cubbing box to closely mirror what happens in the wild,” said a spokeswoman for the park.
“As there is no proven test to predict polar bear pregnancy, we will continue to monitor her until her breeding cycle would naturally come to its end.”
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