Munich's Hellabrunn Zoo debuted twin polar bear cubs for public viewing on Wednesday, March 19. The 14-week old sister and brother cubs were spotted walking around with their seven-year-old mother named Giovanna, biting one another and sticking their tongues out! The zoo claims that the twins were born at the end of 2013 and their birth was shot on color camera, the first in the world.
On Dec. 9, 2013, the twin polar bear cubs were born as zoo employees captured live color video feeds from the birthing den. The cubs were born furless and blind, quickly snuggling up against Giovanna. Their mother is said to behave in an exemplary fashion as the little ones continue to become bigger, stronger and more active.
The polar bear cub twins were critical during their first few weeks as mortality rate for this time period is about 70 per cent. Both the baby cubs and their mother were protected from the outside world with a trusted zookeeper feeding Giovanna some salad or melon once a week. Usually, polar bear mothers in the wild just drink water during the winter season.
The twin polar bear cubs' 14-year-old father is named Yoghi and he only gets to contact with his cubs through a cuddling fence. The zookeepers observe how Giovanna will react to this contact to determine whether or not it will be possible to have a family together. If Giovanna reacts negatively, Yoghi will remain separated from her and their offspring.
In November 2013, a lone surviving cub named Humphrey at the Toronto Zoo took his first wobbly steps and captured the hearts of many. The tiny white 4.4-kilogram cub was taken from his mother named Aurora and moved to the zoo's intensive care unit a couple of days after his birth when zoo employees observed his lack of movement following the death of his siblings. Watch Humphrey here
The cub has been released from the incubator and reports say he is now "quite active." Humphrey is ready to join other polar bears in the Tundra Trek exhibit where an area of the zoo is dedicated to focus on climate change and its detrimental effects on species conservation.