Cheetah at St. Louis Zoo gives birth to 8 cubs

This Dec. 18, 2017, photo provided by the St. Louis Zoo shows Bingwa, a 4-year-old cheetah with her eight three-week-old cubs. Bingwa gave birth Nov. 26 but the births weren't announced until Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2018. Eight cubs are a rarity. Zoo officials say cheetah litters are typically three or four cubs. (Carolyn Kelly/St. Louis Zoo via AP)

ST. LOUIS (AP) – A cheetah named Bingwa at the St. Louis Zoo is a proud mother – eight times over.

The zoo announced Wednesday that the 4-year-old cheetah gave birth Nov. 26 to eight cubs – three male and five female. It’s the largest litter of cheetah cubs ever delivered at the zoo. The average litter size is three to four cubs.

In fact, the Association of Zoos and Aquariums has documented 430 litters and says this is the first time a cheetah mom has given birth to and reared on her own a litter of eight cubs at a zoo.

Perhaps not surprisingly, Bingwa means “champion” in Swahili.

All eight cubs and the mom are doing well. They’ll remain indoors, away from the public, for several months.