The cubs, born to 8-year-old mum, ‘Kirana’, and 7-year-old dad, ‘Fabi’, were found to be two males and one female. The, now 12-week-old, triplets were carefully examined, weighed and vaccinated by the zoo’s specialist vets and carnivore keepers.
Supporters of the Zoo were given the opportunity to vote on the names for the trio, and the top-voted monikers were recently announced. The two boys were named ‘Jaya’ (meaning victorious) and ‘Topan’ (hurricane). The girl was given the name ‘Kasarna’ (beautiful melody).
Gabby Drake, vet at Chester Zoo, said, “Sumatran Tigers are one of the rarest big cat species in the world, and our new triplets are very special cubs indeed. It’s really important for us to make sure they’re healthy and in good physical condition and we’re happy to report that all three of the cubs have been given a clean bill of health – they’re in tip-top shape.”
Gabby continued, “The cubs were given similar vaccines to those a pet cat receives when it’s taken to the vets. Of course we were much more cautious about handling the cubs than we would be with domestic kittens though. We checked them over as quickly as we could before returning them to their mum, Kirana. She’s a very good mother and fiercely protective of her young charges, so we certainly didn't want to hang around for long.”
Sumatran Tigers are found only on the Indonesian island of Sumatra. They are the smallest of all tigers and have the narrowest stripes.
Critically endangered in the wild, there are believed to be just 300-400 Sumatran Tigers left, as they are often targeted by poachers who use their body parts as traditional medicine. Much of their jungle habitat has also been destroyed.
More amazing pics, below the fold!