Wildcat Kittens Discovered in UK Give Hope for the Species’ Survival
Britain’s rarest animal is given new hope as four Wildcat kittens are born at Wildwood in Kent.
These delightful kittens have been caught on video by remote cameras at Wildwood Trust near Canterbury, a charity dedicated to the restoration of Britain’s lost wildlife. Wildwood’s dedicated keepers have learned over many years how challenging raising wildcat kittens can be and are particularly proud of how well first-time mum Jura is coping. Wildcat numbers are now so low that new research has concluded there is no longer a viable wildcat population living wild in Scotland. Wildcats once roamed all over the UK, including Kent and the South East. Persecution and habitat destruction drove them north into their last refuges in Scotland, but this year scientists classified them as functionally extinct as so few have been observed.
Sally Holt, Wildwood’s wildcat Keeper, explains: “This outstanding success has come about through decades of hard work; with the most numbers we have ever bred to one mother. This is so rewarding because this is mother Jura’s first ever litter and we are always very worried first-time mums may lose their kittens.” Let’s hope all goes well for this new family and one day wildcats will be roaming the countryside once more.