It looks like a cuddly bear, but don't be tempted to hug and kiss the two new North American wolverines that arrive at the San Francisco Zoo on Friday, July 18.
On loan from the Columbus Zoo, the SF Zoo will host a 7-year-old male and 13-year-old female wolverine in an exhibit on the east side of the Pachyderm Building, where they’ll have “water for splashing and playing, trees for climbing, and dirt for digging,” according to a press release.
These powerful hunters actually belong to the weasel family, typically weigh less than 35 pounds, and are exceedingly rare. The Los Angeles Times recently reported that there are about 300 wolverines left in the continental U.S., predominantly living in Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho.
Wolverines are also a rarity among zoos; the SF Zoo will be one of eight in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums to house wolverines. The zoo plans to open up a naming auction for the wolverines, the proceeds of which will benefit conservation and exhibit costs.
Wolverine Weekend kicks off July 19 and 20 at the SF Zoo (1 Zoo Road) and, in addition to educational talks, the famed X-Men character will be on-site to hang out and pose for pictures. Fingers-crossed that it’s Hugh Jackman.