Whipsnade Zoo has welcomed three piglets that are among the rarest and most endangered species in the world.

The Visayan warty piglets were born on June 10, with three proving to be a lucky number as mum Tessa carried her infants for three months, three weeks and three days exactly, before giving birth to her tiny trio.

"We were absolutely delighted to come into work to find Tessa, our female Visayan warty pig, tending to three tiny newborns," said zookeeper Gracie Gee.

The piglets are found on the Visayan Islands.The piglets are found on the Visayan Islands. (Image: Whipsnade Zoo)

"She’s an excellent mum; really attentive and patient – especially when they’re all trying to get her attention at once.

"The pigs – now considered one of the world’s rarest species – are part of a conservation breeding programme which will help to boost the numbers of these animals, in a safe and protected environment, ensuring there’s a back-up population should wild reintroductions be considered the best action."

The piglets were born with distinctive stripe pattern on their orange-coloured backs, which helps them blend in with the forest floor and protect them from predators on their native Visayan islands in the Philippines.

The piglets are endangered due to habitat loss.The piglets are endangered due to habitat loss. (Image: Whipsnade Zoo)

Once found on six of the islands, the rare pigs are now found on only two, after logging in the 1970s and 1980s reduced their habitat to a fraction of what it once was.

The piglets will be a welcome boost to the conservation breeding programme for the critically endangered species.