Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo’s newest addition, a 10-year-old Amur tiger named Changbai, has completed her quarantine period and is now on exhibit. After arriving on Jan. 12, 2017 from the Philadelphia Zoo, the last three months were devoted to making her familiar with her new home. Once she was comfortable with her surroundings, Chang made her debut at the zoo in April.
Amur tigers, also known as Siberian tigers, are very rare, and are critically endangered in the wild. According to the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA) statistics, today’s tigers are thought to occupy less than 7% of their original range. Threatened by habitat loss and degradation, poaching, tiger-human conflict, and loss of prey, four of nine subspecies have disappeared from the wild just in the past hundred years. Arguably the most endangered big cat remaining in the wild, Amur tiger numbers have dropped to fewer than 500. The future of the Amur tiger has been a major concern of the world’s zoos for many years.