Pair of Siberian tiger cubs born into zoo family
THERE were two noteworthy births in Winnipeg on Friday, but they aren’t the type of babies you diaper.
Two Siberian tiger cubs were born in the early hours at the Assiniboine Park Zoo.
The cubs, each weighing an estimated two to three pounds, are doing fine but won’t be ready for viewing for four to six weeks.
Zoo officials are keeping a respectful distance from the cubs and mother Kendra, who is resting comfortably.
The successful birth of the rare animals has zoo staff practically popping champagne.
“Everyone at the Assiniboine Park Zoo is beyond excited,” said Tim Sinclair-Smith, director of zoological operations, adding Kendra is a “proven mother.”
Like their domestic-cat relatives, tigers are born with their eyes and ears shut and need time to develop before they will be able to leave their mother’s side.
Zoo officials believe that by the time the cubs are six weeks old, their mother will allow them to venture out of their den and into the exhibit area.
The zoo’s new cubs look cute and cuddly now, but fully grown Siberian tigers are the world’s largest cats.
Properly known as Amur tigers, Siberian tigers are a seriously endangered species. About 500 currently survive in the wild.
The Assiniboine Park Zoo is working to ensure the continued survival of Siberian tigers through its participation in the species survival program.
The program collates the collection of tigers in North America, then matches pairs to ensure the most diverse genetics possible.
The new cubs number among several furry newborns at the Assiniboine Park Zoo, including Canadian lynx, red pandas, musk oxen and stone sheep.
Watch video on the impending birth below.
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