Siberian Tiger Cubs Begin To Open Their Eyes

Siberian Tiger Cubs Begin To Open Their Eyes (Image 1)

The tiger cubs at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium are growing bigger and their eyes are starting to open.

The three males were born April 21 at the zoo and weighed only 2.5 pounds.

The Zoo team is hand-feeding them after their mother failed to show maternal care.

These are the first cubs for 10-year-old female Irisa, although the Zoo team and the Tiger Species Survival Plan (SSP) had hoped for years she would reproduce and pass on her valuable genes. This is the third litter sired by 11-year-old Foli since 2012.

There are currently 10 Amur tigers at the Columbus Zoo including these cubs and four cubs born in 2013.

Amur tigers, also referred to as Siberian tigers, are critically endangered; fewer than 400 individuals are believed to exist in the forests of the Russian Far East. Their populations are dwindling due to overhunting of prey species such as deer and wild boar, habitat loss, and poaching for skins and body parts used in traditional Chinese medicine. Humans directly cause 75 to 85 percent of tiger deaths.

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