Rescued Tiger Cub At San Diego Zoo Gets A New Friend

tigers

Last month a teenager was caught allegedly trying to smuggle a tiger cub into the United States from Mexico and the cub was sent to the San Diego Zoo. Fortunately for the seized cub, he has a new friend. A 9-week old male Sumatran tiger cub from the National Zoo in Washington D.C. was flown in to join the Bengal tiger cub that was confiscated at the Mexican border. The Sumatran tiger cub has been fed by humans since the start of August because the mother stopped feeding it either because she wasn’t producing enough milk or had completely ceased milk production altogether.

Cubs mother stopped displaying maternal behaviour

The Sumatran tiger mother who is called Damai started displaying aggressive behaviour towards her offspring when the little fella tried to nurse, officials at the National Zoo said. This meant the cub had to be separated from his mother and whilst the cub did express a desire to see his mother, she failed to reciprocate. Craig Saffoe who is the big cat’s curator at the National Zoo said he hand his team felt mixed about sending the cub to San Diego.

Cub’s caretakers did everything they could to keep mum and son together

Mr Saffoe said as the cub’s caretakers, his team has done everything it could to enable him to survive and socialise with his mother so he can grow up to be a big strong tiger. Now that his mother has ceased all maternal behaviour, the best option was to pair the critter with the cub at San Diego. Mr Saffoe says having another cub that is the same age to interact with will help both animals. They will be able to play with one another and learn how to be tiger’s together.

Bengal tiger seized at the US border

As we have reported on this blog, the Bengal tiger was rescued at the end of August by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials who found the cub whilst they were inspecting a vehicle attempting to enter the United States from Mexico. Wildlife officials then took the 2-month old cub to the San Diego Zoo where vets examined him and found him to be in excellent health. He has remained at the zoo ever since. The teenager who allegedly tried to smuggle the cub in was later charged in Federal court for the offence.

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