VIDEO: Three orphaned tiger cubs rescued in Far East Russia

On November 27, three young tigers appeared near a military unit located 8 km away from Yakovlevka village, Primorsky krai. The small predators tried to kill a domestic dog, but a guard scared the animals away into the forest. In another attempt the tiger cubs succeed in catching a hen.

Everybody knows that tiger cubs would never walk alone, without their mother. Encountering stray tiger cubs means that something must have happened to the adult tigress, otherwise, it would have never left its cubs alone. Tragically, in these cases, the mother tigress was likely killed by poachers.

Specialists tried to track the tigress but couldn’t find it. They then decided to capture and transfer the cubs to the Amur Tiger Rehabilitation Centre in Alekseyevka village, where the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) is helping to rehabilitate an orphan tigress named Cinderella who’s expected to be released back to the wild in May 2013. 

On November 30, the first of three tiger cubs was caught. The second was caught on December 2  and the last cub was found on December 6 and moved to the Rehabilitation center. Experts from the Wildlife Conservation Society, Inspection Tiger, and the Hunting Management Department took part in the operation.

Two of the tiger cubs are male and the other is female. The last tiger cub caught yesterday is quite weak, that’s why the specialists immediately started providing care to the animal. 

At present, it’s very difficult to know the fate of these tigers. We can only hope that they will grow into healthy tigers and learn the necessary survival skills to be released back to the wild.

This story is yet another grim reminder of the lack of wildlife protection in Russia, and we must act immediately to rectify this.

A couple of weeks ago, I participated in an expert meeting where changes to the legislation were proposed regarding  keeping, treatment and transportation of red listed animals or their derivatives. These changes are aimed at strengthening punishment and preventing poaching. IFAW is working hard to get those amaendments adopted.

Until then, we will do our best to support groundbreaking rehabilitation efforts to save orphaned Amur tigers and get them back to the wild. After all, we have less than 350 left. Every life is precious, and in the case of Amur tigers, the survival of an entire species is in the balance.

--AF

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