White tiger boom at Vandalur, 3 more born
D Madhavan , TNN, Jun 8, 2010, 03.49am IST
Information About White Tigers: http://bigcatrescue.org/cats/wild/white_tigers.htm
CHENNAI: For the second time in 15 months, six-year-old white tigress Anu has given birth to three cubs at the Arignar Anna Zoological Park in Vandalur. The cubs, all healthy, were noticed on Sunday morning by zookeeper K Chelliah. With this, the number of white tigers in the zoo has gone up to seven; the total number of tigers is now 15.
“It will take several days for the young ones to come out in the open. Efforts have been taken to keep the area quiet,” VC Balraj, deputy director of Arignar Anna Zoological Park, told TOI on Monday.
Anu arrived at the zoo on October 1, 2006, along with her companion, seven-year-old Bhismar, from the National Zoological Park in New Delhi. In March 2009, Anu had given birth to three cubs — the first successful captive breeding of white tigers at Vandalur zoo. Though one of them died within a week, the remaining two, Akshara and Narmadha, have grown up and are healthy.
Only a few days ago, two digital video cameras were installed in the enclosure to monitor the delivery. After Anu conceived, it took her 104 days to deliver the litter. The three cubs weighs around 350g each.
Tigers are solitary animals and like to be left alone, especially when breeding. The zoo authorities took painstaking efforts to ensure that Anu was left undisturbed during her pregnancy. No visitors were allowed to the enclosure for more than two months.
To bring down the heat during summer, the enclosure was covered with wet gunny bags. Except on Tuesdays when the tigers are made to fast, they are fed 7kg of beef daily.