Mill Mountain Zoo in Roanoke welcomes new kittens

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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ7) Roanoke's Mill Mountain Zoo has welcomed new kittens.

Shayne Dwyer/WDBJ7

Pallas Cats were born last month and are under close supervision of zoo staff. Mom and dad are at the zoo, but the kittens are part of the species survival plan.

After about six months, they'll head over to different zoos.

Pallas cats are "near threatened," which is above endangered.

"It's important for us because it's a very small captive population and any new genetic information that gets added to that population makes a big difference over the long term of people being able to actually see Pallas Cats up close in person," Mill Mountain Zoo Co-Director Robin Lentz said.

The zoo's hosting a naming contest. Winners receive a special prize.