TAMPA, Fla.- A new resident has made an entrance at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo. On September 11th the zoo’s first critically endangered Malayan tiger cub was born.
On Tuesday Lowry Park Zoo released photos of the baby tiger and its mom. The cub was born to “Bzui” and is being cared for in a den located outside of the exhibit. The zoo said in its release that Bzui will take some time nursing and caring for her cub in a den before making an appearance in the exhibit. Bzui came to the zoo last spring to be with her mate, “Mata.”
“The cub is growing normally and nursing well,” said Dr. Larry Killmar, the Zoo’s Chief Zoological Officer. “Our Zoo is proud to be working to preserve a species like the Malayan tiger, which is facing a growing number of threats in the wild.”
Lowry Park Zoo said on Facebook that they would do their best to provide regular updates on the cub’s development.
Video from Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo Facebook Page.
To this day there are only 250 Malayan tigers left in the wild, which makes the species critically endangered, one step away from becoming extinct. Lowry Park Zoo is working to study the tigers to help maintain the population along with their breeding program as a part of the species survival plan.
The Malayan tiger subspecies is the smallest in size of all tigers species. They average 260 pounds for adult males and 220 pounds for adult females. The subspecies was not officially recognized until 2004. Poaching and rapid habitat decline are two of the main causes for their endangered status. Heightened human/animal conflict from expanding human development areas is another contributor to their decline in population.
Those interested in updates on the new baby cub are encouraged to follow Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo on Facebook and other social media.