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Highland Wildlife Park welcomes three Amur tiger cubs

The litter is now spending the first crucial weeks away from public eyes, nursed by its mother Dominika.

Dominika and her little cubs

The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland’s (RZSS) Highland Wildlife Park welcomed a litter of three Amur tiger cubs. This is an extremely good news, as the Amur tiger is in danger of extinction.

Highland Wildlife Park welcomes three Amur tiger cubs

The mother, Dominika, gave birth to the cubs on May 18. The staff reported that the three newborns are doing well, but they want remain cautious at such an early stage. Dominika is now nursing the cubs away from public view, while visitors can see their father, Botzman. The three Amur tiger cubs are still very little and haven’t already opened their eyes. They will meet their father once they grow older, because they are too delicate at the moment.

Vickie Larkin, carnivore team leader at Highland Wildlife Park, said: “We are really excited about our new arrivals, but the first few weeks of a cub’s life are crucial, so we are keeping public viewing closed for now to give Dominika and the youngsters lots of peace and quiet.” “The cubs’ eyes will start to open any day now. In the coming weeks they will be weighed and sexed during their first health check, and named shortly after.”

“Amur tigers grow quite quickly, increasing almost four times in size within the first month of their life, but they will remain dependent on their mum for at least 15 months. We hope visitors will start to see them out and about towards the end of July.”

Dominika is a very attentive mother and it is beautiful to see her given the chance to display these natural behaviours again.” Dominika was also born at Highland Wildlife Park in 2009 and mothered her first litter in 2013. Botzeman already fathered three cubs in 2018 at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo and arrived at RZSS in October 2020.

RSZZ aims to save the endangered Amur tigers as part of a breeding programme. In addition, the RZSS WildGenes laboratory, based at Edinburgh Zoo, has developed new methods to evaluate the tiger diets in order to protect the endangered species in Nepal.

Mr Larkin told: “There are just 500 Amur tigers remaining in the wild. So, our adorable cubs represent an important contribution to the future of this endangered species which is at risk of extinction due to extensive habitat loss and poaching.”

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