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Wild Animals

Brace yourself for an overload of "oohs" and "aahs" from the softer touches among us.

Adelaide Zoo has announced five adorable meerkat pups were born in the early hours of July 24 — the first meerkats born at the zoo in seven years — weighing just 100 grams each.

They spent their first weeks of life in their burrow under the care of parents Miney and Swazi, and have only just started venturing outside.

"Miney and Swazi are doting first-time parents, tending to the pups' every need and taking turns at sentry duty guarding their burrow," Adelaide Zoo meerkat keeper Jenna Hollamby said.

The sex of the pups will be confirmed when they are eight weeks old, at which point they will also receive vaccinations.

Despite their cuteness, however, meerkats are known to be aggressive and highly territorial so keep adoring fingers well away.
In a win for conservationists and environmental groups, British Columbia says it will no longer allow the trophy hunting of grizzly bears in the Canadian province starting on Nov. 30.

The new policy blocks all hunting of grizzlies in the Great Bear Rainforest but still allows people to hunt them for food elsewhere in British Columbia.

Of the approximately 15,000 grizzlies in British Columbia, about 250 are killed by hunters annually, according to government figures.

Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development Minister Doug Donaldson characterized that level of hunting as "sustainable" in an interview with the CBC.

However, he says the decision to end trophy hunting is "not a matter of numbers, it's a matter of society has come to the point in B.C. where they are no longer in favour of the grizzly bear trophy hunt."