Rare Sumatran tiger gives birth to cubs

Newly born cubs lie inside a cage with their mother at the Taman Rimba zoo in Jambi. Photo / AFP
Newly born cubs lie inside a cage with their mother at the Taman Rimba zoo in Jambi. Photo / AFP

A rare Sumatran tiger has given birth to three cubs at an Indonesian zoo, an official there said Tuesday, giving hope for the survival of the endangered species.

The eight-year old big cat named Uni gave birth at Taman Rimba zoo in Jambi province on Sumatra island on Saturday but one of the cubs later died, the zoo's head Adriyani, who goes by one name, said.

"We are very happy with the birth even though one of them died because of its weak condition," she told AFP, adding that Uni first mated with six-year old male tiger named Peter in 2010.

"This is the second birth. I hope that the pair will give us more cubs in the future. They are perfectly matched," she said, adding that Uni gave birth to four cubs in 2011 but only two survived.

There are now eight tigers in the zoo, Adriyani said.

Fewer than 400 Sumatran tigers are left in the wild with several dying each year as a result of traps, poaching or other human actions.

- AFP

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