Visiting white tiger arrives at Seneca Park Zoo
By Linda Quinlan, staff writer
Posted May 20, 2009 @ 03:40 PM
For The Facts About White Tigers Visit http://www.bigcatrescue.or/cats/wild/white_tigers.htm
Irondequoit, N.Y. — If you like “cats” of any size, shape or color, Monroe County’s Seneca Park Zoo may be the purr-fect place to be this summer.
County Executive Maggie Brooks today introduced Laska, a 500-pound, 10-year-old male white tiger, who will have a home at the zoo, located at 2222 St. Paul St., Rochester, through Labor Day.
“The rarity of a white tiger like Laska will make this up-close exhibit a truly impressive and memorable experience for everyone who visits,” Brooks said.
A white tiger is characterized by icy blue eyes, a pink nose, pink paw pads and white fur marked with chocolate brown stripes. They originate from Bengal tigers, normally orange with stripes, and are a result of both parents having a recessive gene for white coloration. They also tend to be larger, both at birth and at full adult size.
White tigers last visited the Seneca Park Zoo in 1999.
“And we had record attendance; people were enamored with this majestic feline,” said Rachel Baker August, executive director for the Seneca Park Zoo Society.
This is the 11th year of the zoo’s visiting animal program, which provides the public an opportunity to view an animal that is not already currently exhibited.
“We are very happy to be able to show people this interesting color variant of the Bengal tiger,” said Zoo Director Larry Sorel. “We do, however, want to remind the community that we are still committed to our Amur tiger conservation work through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Tiger Species Survival Plan.”
McDonalds of the Greater Rochester Area is the corporate sponsor of the white tiger exhibit.
The zoo had expected a pair of white tigers this summer, but prior to transport, the zoo was notified that the female white tiger that was expected to accompany Laska was pregnant and unable to travel.