Tigers a little less endangered
After months of waiting patiently, Auckland Zoo has welcomed some new additions into its family.
Endangered sumatran tiger Molek gave birth to three cubs last week following a six month breeding programme.
Keepers arrived on Thursday to hear a “squeaking” sound in the tiger den.
At first it was thought there was only one cub but a second was discovered on Tuesday and a third on Wednesday.
Further details are unavailable as the cubs are being left to bond with their mother.
Auckland Zoo carnivore team leader Andrew Coers says the birth is wonderful.
“It is a highlight of the conservation efforts of the zoo to help this critically endangered tiger,” he says.
Worldwide, there are fewer than 160 sumatran tigers in captivity and less than 400 in the wild. The new cubs are particularly valuable because their father’s bloodline is not represented in Australasian or European zoos.
At eight years old Molek is coming into motherhood later in life and Mr Coers says it will be a fantastic experience for her.
“As excited as we are, there are still many risks involved for the survival of cubs,” he says.
“By providing an unobtrusive environment for mum and cub, we make things as natural and stress free as possible for them both.”
The cubs should be on display in six to eight weeks.