Three snow leopard cubs born in the Highlands have been named by donors and by a public vote.
The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) has announced the cubs, born in May at Highland Wildlife Park near Aviemore, will be named Padme, Maya, and Yashin.
The names are a tribute to the species’ native home across the Himalaya.
Chosen by two of the wildlife conservation charity’s donors, one of the females has been named Padme meaning lotus flower, and the male Yashin meaning lightning bolt.
Following a public vote hosted by the People’s Postcode Lottery, the third cub was named Maya – the name of Buddha’s mother.
The cubs were born on Saturday, May 28, this year and were discovered when high-pitched sounds were heard inside the cubbing den, and the cubs were spotted by keepers.
The cubs have been off-show to visitors while they gain strength and grow, but following their first health check earlier this month, the three cubs have regularly been spotted out of the cubbing den, meaning visitors can sometimes spot the triplets beginning to explore.
Now protected throughout much of their native mountain range, snow leopard populations are still threatened due to a decline in available prey and conflict with local farmers.
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