The Associated Press reports that London Zoo has proudly announced that Melati, one of the few 300 Sumatran tigers left in the world, has recently given birth to three cubs earlier this week. Besides this being great news for the fast declining species, this is also happy news considering Melati’s loss in October last year when her two-week-old cub drowned in one of the zoo’s pools.
London Zoo opened their 22 million dollar Tiger Territory in March 2013 to promote Sumatran tiger breeding. Since the birth of the newborn cub last year was celebrated as the first Sumatran tiger to be born in 17 years, its death was a devastating blow for London Zoo.
The zookeepers have not yet interacted with the baby cubs, and the new family is also not available to the public as of yet. The proud papa Jae Jae can be seen roving about the main tiger area of London Zoo, away from the cubs as well. Zookeepers closely monitor interaction with Mama and the babies via a hidden camera, and are pleased with the interaction. So far, the cubs have opened their eyes, taken their first steps, and have already begun to develop a bit of personality.
Melati rarely leaves her babies’ side; she is known to have a nervous disposition and appears very watchful over the three. Zookeepers are still not sure of how the drowned cub ventured into the pool, but they have drained the pool, built a conservancy for the family to explore and closely monitor the affairs remotely 24/7.
The cubs were born on Monday at 12:28, 12:59 and 1:18. They have yet to be named or have their gender identified. One spunky cub has been nicknamed Trouble for its ambitious exploring and teasing of its siblings.
Image via YouTube