ZOOKEEPERS have announced the UK’s youngest polar bear, born in a Scottish wildlife park last year, is a boy.

The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland’s vets at the Highland Wildlife Park confirmed the three-month-old cub is male during his first routine health check on Wednesday. He was born in December to mother Victoria and father Arktos at the wildlife park, near Aviemore.

The National:

Keith Gilchrist, animal collection manager at the park, said: “He is already becoming more confident every day and it is incredible to see him grow and develop.”

During his first check-up the cub was also chipped, vaccinated and confirmed to be in good health.

The National:

The three-month-old does not yet have a name, and staff from the wildlife park are soon set to ask the public for help in what their newest arrival should be called.

Public viewing is still closed to give Victoria and her newborn peace and quiet, but the cub will soon be introduced to his large outdoor enclosure.

The National:

Gilchrist added: “Like all the animals in our care, our polar bears play an important role in attracting and engaging thousands of visitors each year so they can learn about the threats animals face in the wild and the action they can take to help.

Victoria and Arktos previously had cub Hamish in 2017, who was at the time the first polar bear cub born in the UK for 25 years. As part of the breeding programme for the species, Hamish moved to Yorkshire Wildlife Park in 2020.