Tiger Triplets a Great Achievement for Taronga Zoo
October 27, 2011
Three Sumatran Tiger cubs - two male and one female - were born at Taronga Zoo in the early hours of August 20. They came into the world one hour apart, to mother ‘Jumilah’ and father, ‘Satu’, as zoo keepers monitored the labor from nearby. These babies are a valuable boost to this critically endangered species, seeing as there are as few as 400 left in the wild.
Carnivore Supervisor Louise Ginman said: “The whole Zoo is ecstatic at the birth of three healthy little tigers, especially all the carnivore keepers. Satu was brought to Taronga from Germany as part of the international zoo breeding program for Sumatran Tigers to mate with our Taronga-born female Jumilah and introduce new genetics to our region.”
“The female is really cheeky, with a lot of attitude and is the first one to check out new things. The boys are more cautious, but they’re growing in confidence and body size each day, now tipping the scales over 13 pounds (6 kg) each. I was here when their mother was born, so to see her rear her own cubs and be such a great mother really is a highlight of my career.”
Initially, the cubs will spend a very short time on exhibit with their mother, as the youngsters tire easily. As they get older, they’ll spend more time out and about.
Taronga Director and Chief Executive, Cameron Kerr, said: “In a world where just 7% of original tiger habitat remains, this triple birth is a great achievement by Taronga’s dedicated keepers. When you think that these cubs represent nearly 1% of the wild Sumatran Tiger population, you realise just how precarious the future is for these iconic creatures.”
“Hope for the future of this and other species is inextricably linked with the ability of Taronga and zoos like it to maintain a healthy and viable insurance population so humanity is not deprived of the joy and inspiration of such creatures in the future.”