Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo’s 10-year-old Amur tiger (Panthera tigris altaica), Changbai, gave birth on Nov. 25 to four tiger cubs, although only two survived. The two surviving cubs, both females, were removed from Changbai when she showed no interest in taking care of them. Both two-week-old cubs are in seclusion in the Zoo hospital, housed in a 90-degree ambient temperature enclosure, with a base warmed to 85 degrees to sustain the cubs’ warmth.
“We are hand feeding the babies five times a day,” explained Zoo Director Gregg Dancho. “They are being given a feline milk replacement formula, supplemented with vitamins. They are a little underweight, possibly due to the age of their mother and the fact that there were four kittens in the litter.” Survival of the two remaining cubs is still a challenge. Zoo veterinarians and animal care staff are doing everything they can to get them through this critical time. It will be several more weeks before the cubs will be available for viewing by the public.