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April 20, 2017: We've scoured the Web to find the best and most compelling animal stories, videos and photos. And it's all right here.
Three adorable polar bears are making their public debut at the Columbus Zoo in Ohio this week. Mom Aurora and her twins — a boy and a girl — will make their first public appearance today. Aurora’s own twin, Anana, and her baby girl made their debut on Wednesday. The three cubs won’t be on view together because polar bears tend to raise their babies independently, the zoo said. The zoo’s staff will be naming the twins, but the public will get the chance to decide on Anana’s cub’s name. The choices include Amelia Gray (Amelia means defender and the cub has a little patch of gray fur); Denali (after the mountain peak in Alaska); Elisapee (a native Alaskan derivation of Elizabeth); or Vieta (which means spot, for her little patch of gray fur.) You can vote here until May 2, and the results will be revealed on Mother’s Day. — Read it from the Columbus Zoo’s Facebook
Twenty-nine small Galapagos tortoises, who are vulnerable to extinction, were rescued from alleged traffickers on a bus in Peru, the Galapagos National Park said. Wildlife authorities in Peru found the tortoises in a cardboard box on the bus and seized them. They will be returned to Ecuador. Officials said genetic studies will help determine the zone of archipelago the small tortoises were taken from. — Read it at Phys.org
A year after SeaWorld announced it would stop breeding killer whales, its last orca calf was born at its park in San Antonio, Texas, on Wednesday. Mom Takara, 25, was already pregnant when the company decided to stop breeding the whales in captivity. There are now 23 orcas in residence at SeaWorld’s parks in San Antonio, San Diego and Orlando. Their famed killer whale shows will be phased out by 2019 after the company faced a public backlash, but the whales are expected to remain on display. Veterinarians have not yet determined whether the new calf is male or female, but said everything appears to be going smoothly for the calf and its experienced mom. — Read it from the AP via NBC News
Firefighters are often called on to help free kittens from car engines. But a crew in Indianapolis found a litter of three in the hose bed of their own truck on Tuesday. The firefighters kept hearing chirping noises and found the newborns — two boys and a girl — huddled together in the back of Engine 35. They believe the mom crawled inside the engine while it was in the shop and gave birth, but they couldn’t find her anywhere. The firefighters wrapped the tiny kittens in blankets and brought them to Noah’s Animal Hospital, where they’re being bottle fed. They will be available for adoption in about eight weeks. — Read it from Inside Edition via Yahoo
Neighbors in the Fort Worth, Texas, area worked together to get help for a young and scared Pit Bull who was wandering around the area with his head stuck in a plastic jar. Neighbors couldn’t catch the dog and contacted animal control for help. Two animal control officers were able to safely free the dog from the jar. They believe his head became stuck when he tried to reach some food at the bottom of the jar. The 1-year-old dog was nicknamed Pickle after one caller reported there was a pickle jar stuck on his head. Pickle is now recovering at the Fort Worth Animal Shelter, and will be adopted or go to a rescue group when he’s ready. — Read it at Dallas News
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