Nkeke the otter gave birth to her third litter of pups at the Potter Park Zoo in Lansing, Michigan, on Feb. 3

By Kelli Bender
February 24, 2021 04:16 PM
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Three Otter Pups Born to Nkeke and Miles at Potter Park Zoo
Credit: Potter Park Zoo

Nkeke must be a fan of numbers because for her third litter of pups she gave birth to triplets.

According to the Potter Park Zoo, the experienced North American river otter mom gave birth to her third litter at the Lansing, Michigan facility on Feb. 3.

"This is Miles and Nkeke's third litter of pups, and while each litter has been exciting, this one is especially so since it is their first set of triplets," Carolyn Schulte, a Potter Park Zoo otter keeper, shared on the zoo's blog. "Nkeke is an experienced mom and thanks to her excellent relationship with the keepers we have been able to monitor the pup's growth closely to ensure they each grow at a healthy rate."

Nkeke has been doing a great job caring for their babies so far, keeping all of her pups at a healthy weight.

"With triplets there are more demands on the mother and we're cautiously hopeful that she will be able to raise all three without veterinary intervention," Potter Park Zoo Director of Animal Health Dr. Ronan Eustace said.

Since the pups are continuing to nurse without issue, the zoo's keepers are giving Nkeke and her babies space to bond. Because of this, the zoo has not yet determined the sex of each otter baby.

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Nkeke arrived at the Potter Park Zoo in 2016 from the Roger Williams Zoo in Rhode Island, and her mate Miles was born at the Michigan zoo in 2013, marking Potter Park Zoo's first otter birth. The pair's first litter of two males was born in Feb. 2018, and their second litter — also two males — was born in Feb. 2020.

Otter lovers can keep updated on the progress of Nkeke's three new pups by following the Potter Park Zoo on Facebook.