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Park goes nuts for 48th baby squirrel
Thursday April 24th 2014
A red squirrel has been hailed as a one-mum army after she gave birth to her 48th kitten since 2008.
Tortoiseshell the squirrel has become one of the most prolific breeders, along with her partner Tweedledum, producing litters regularly at Norfolk's Pensthorpe Conservation Trust.
There were fears that Tortoiseshell might never breed again after Tweedledum's death two years ago - but she has since found a perfect partner in Bryn, with three new kittens appearing in her latest brood.
The squirrel was named a super-mum of the squirrel world by experts at the Trust, having been a "fantastic mother" and a consistent breeder at the age of seven.
There are only a handful of red squirrel breeding locations in Britain. With the kittens born between late February and early March, wardens at the park are predicting the youngsters will soon be in a position to start exploring the outside world from the drey.
Red squirrel kittens are fully weaned after 10 weeks of nursing.
Copyright Press Association 2014