Forty-eight endangered Ethiopian wolf pups born this year were among the heartwarming animal welfare and conservation successes in 2020. International wildlife charity Born Free has released a list of triumphs to bring a little festive cheer. Along with the wolf pups – Africa’s most threatened carnivore, with only an estimated 500 left in the world – more than 140 elephants were born in Amboseli National Park in Kenya, including two sets of twins.
The Kenyan government estimates the number of lions living there has also increased by 25 per cent, from 2,000 in 2010 to 2,489 this year.
And six baby orangutans were born in Borneo’s Lamandau Wildlife Reserve in 2020.
Among other success stories, two cheetah cubs were saved from the illegal wildlife trade in Ethiopia, vervet monkeys and baboons were rescued from captivity, and 21 confiscated vervet monkeys were released back into the wild in Zambia.
A Born Free spokeswoman said: “Wildlife started to reclaim the world during lockdown. West African giraffes in Niger are ranging more widely and a jaguar was spotted in a protected area in Argentina, just 45 miles from a city.”