Male tiger kills female during herding introduction at Tacoma Zoo | Washington News
TACOMA, Wash. (AP) – A female Sumatran tiger at the Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium in Tacoma has died after another tiger attacked her during a breeding introduction, officials said.
Six-year-old tiger Kirana, born at the zoo, died on Monday, The News Tribune reported.
Dr Karen Wolf, the zoo’s chief veterinarian, said in a press release that an autopsy completed on Monday confirmed Kirana died of significant trauma from injuries and bacterial infection.
Zoo staff slowly introduced Kirana and Raja, the zoo’s 2-year-old male Sumatran tiger as part of a plan to help save endangered species. The two were closely watched and separated by a screen door, staff said.
When zoo keepers removed the barrier to allow the tigers to meet physically on Friday, Kirana was attacked and staff rushed to separate them, officials said.
“We are devastated by the loss of a very special tiger and the loss of the tiger population as a whole,” said zoo general curator Dr Karen Goodrowe, who is also the Species Survival Plan program coordinator for Sumatra, Malayan and Amur. tigers, said some aggression is natural in tiger breeding, but this level was far beyond expectations.
The Tacoma Zoo has introduced four pairs of Sumatran tigers since 2010 and none have resulted in tiger death or serious injury, according to Goodrowe.
Only about 400 Sumatran tigers remain in the wild on the Indonesian island of Sumatra. Fewer than 80 Sumatran tigers live in North American zoos.
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