San Diego Zoo Safari Park Receives Endangered Sumatran Tiger Cub from Smithsonian’s National Zoo
A 9-week-old Sumatran tiger cub (left) greeted an approximately 7-week-old Bengal tiger cub (right) at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park’s Ione and Paul Harter Animal Care Center earlier today (Monday, Sept. 11, 2017). The Sumatran tiger cub arrived from the Smithsonian’s National Zoo in Washington, D.C. earlier today and was introduced to the Bengal tiger cub, currently residing at the Safari Park.
The Sumatran tiger cub was born at the National Zoo on July 11 and was rejected by its mother a short time later. After numerous attempts to keep the mother and cub together, the animal care team decided it was in the cub’s best interest to separate them. The Bengal tiger cub was confiscated by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers Aug. 23 during a vehicle inspection at the U.S./Mexico border, and was brought to the Safari Park for care. Both the San Diego Zoo Safari Park and the National Zoo are members of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), and in a collaborative effort, both zoos’ animal care teams determined the best solution for the well-being of the two cubs would be for them to become companions.
The cubs took to each other immediately, and interacted by wrestling, jumping and engaging in a lot of friendly roughhousing—things tiger cubs do. Keepers will keep a close on eye on the cubs for 24 hours, and if all goes well, guests at the Safari Park will be able to see them through the nursery window at the Animal Care Center during Safari Park operating hours, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.