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Amur Tiger

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Amur Tiger

Post  Cremecat on Fri Jan 11, 2013 11:12 pm

Hello everyone!

Littlewid, you told that you are a Tiger girl, so here is something for you (and other tiger girls and boys :) ):

Helsinki Zoo has two Amur tigers, a male and a female. As there are so few Amur tigers in the wild, they were part of the conservation program - or so everyone thought. When the zoo made some genetic tests, they found out that the male was not a pure Amur tiger; he is carrying also some Bengal tiger genes. If I remember the story right, he was rescued from some circus where these things obviously are not so important... So they cannot let them have cubs, but they still have some love life - they are giving her p-pills.

They both are really beautiful animals, and when I followed their behavior last time I visited the zoo, I fell in love with them.

Here is the female tiger. She was walking around and watching the male whose enclosure was next to hers.


He was just lying in his shelter, watching people and pretending not to notice her:


This continued for a couple of hours. We went to see other big cats and had lunch at the zoo restaurant. When we came back to the tigers, we saw the male move closer to the female. She was so happy! She ran to the male, and I swear they kissed through the bars. Then there was a lot of snuggling, and the female actually tried to cut the bars between them. I am sorry for the quality of this picture, but I have to show this to you:


There was definitely love in the air!

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  littlewid on Fri Jan 11, 2013 11:47 pm

WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW WOW That has just finished my day of perfectly Cremecat and I cant thank you enough. I so am a mad Tiger girl, they always have been my favourite big cat and always will be and looking at those amazing pictures it is obvious to see why.
How lovely to have seen them for real, I am a little envious and although he is not a pure Amur Tiger isn't he just so handsome, his face is stunning and thats a fantastic photo of him, I love it I love you she is also gorgeous and she has such a soft expression on her face and he looks gentle as well and that is so shown in your third picture of them kissing through the bars, that is one very special photo, I bet there are not many photos like that that have been taken before.
What a real shame he is not a pure Amur, they would make a perfect pairing wouldn't they and their cubs would just be adorable. I suppose though he now has a much better life than when he was in the zoo and he does have company of the female, so although the Amur population can not be extended by them both, they both have much richer lives with each other and that can only be good for them.
Do they have names Cremecat? I would love to know them if they do and I can tell you I am off to bed in a while as it's late here in England but I will surely be going to sleep with a huge smile on my face tonight after seeing those two most magnificent Tigers.
Thank you so much for the post, I am one happy lady tonight Group Hug

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Laikipia on Sat Jan 12, 2013 10:28 am

Thanks CC some lovely photos of the two tigers, and it really did look as though they were wanting to be together.

They are really magnificent big cats.

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  whitestarling on Sat Jan 12, 2013 10:56 am

Brilliant photos CC. My favourite Cat to. I alway like to think of the Amurs as Spirits of the Forests, and the Bengals as Ghosts of the Jungle. For such big cats they move so silently, and stealthy. To me they just exude power, and majesty.
A shame there will be no offspring, but I'm glad they have let them stay together, they really do seem to have a special bond with each other.
Thanks for sharing your photos CC, form one happy Tiger boy this morning Laughing
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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Cremecat on Sat Jan 12, 2013 11:33 am

Hi Littlewid, Lai and WS!

I am so happy you liked my little story and the photos. sunny

I am always a little bit worried because I know that some people think that all the zoos should be closed down. I agree that the best place for wild animals is in the wild, but I also think that we need zoos and wildlife parks to save the endangered species from extinction. I like to go to zoos (preferably zoos with good reputation), and last year I visited six different zoos around Europe. :)

Littlewid, I don't know the names of the tigers yet, but I try to find them somehow. Besides, I want to know the names, too!

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Laikipia on Sat Jan 12, 2013 12:10 pm

You are right of course CC and zoos with a good reputation are valuable for helping with endangered species.

I'd love to know their names as well and more news of course.

Lai Very Happy
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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  littlewid on Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:01 pm

HI Cremecat

You should never worry about posting your pictures or views of animals in zoos/wildlife parks. I think we would all love animals to be in their natural habitat but that can't always be the way and there are a lot of very reputable zoos and wildlife parks that are saving some species from becoming extinct, so in this day and age they do have their place and maybe through the education programmes that run out of many of these places, it will inspire the next generation and the generation after that to respect wild life more and one day in the distant future, all animals will be where they are supposed to be, running free.
I have visited Zoos and wildlife parks and have got great joy from going and in some instances it is the only way I will see some of the animals, I always try and take my Neice and Nephew with me as they are both animal lovers and I must say it has helped them to understand the plight of some animals so to me thats a positive for Zoos and wildlife parks.

It would be fantastic if you could find the names of those wonderful Tigers and it will be so nice to be able to follow their story, a shame they don't have a web cam for them, WS and I would be glued to it Shocked

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  littlewid on Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:21 pm

Hi again cremecat
I just found this on the Helsinki Zoo page, I am not sure if it gives the Tigers names as I cant read it which is a shame. Their home page is in English but sadly not this one. Are you able to translate?
http://www.korkeasaari.fi/amurintiikeri
This is the link to the homepage
http://www.korkeasaari.fi/en/services/visitorinformation
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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Laikipia on Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:28 pm

Littlewid, try this

http://www.korkeasaari.fi/en/services/visitorinformation

if you click the union flag it translates the pages into English.

Oops just seen you have this link. I clicked your first link and the flag and it came up with the second link scratch

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  littlewid on Sat Jan 12, 2013 2:37 pm

Thanks Lai but I have tried that, all you get is the home page in English and when you are on the Amur Tiger page if you click the flag it takes you to the visitor information page, it doesnt translate to English, so maybe Cremecat can translate for us but thanks Lai.

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Laikipia on Sat Jan 12, 2013 5:24 pm

Def a blond moment from me Littlewid Embarassed

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  whitestarling on Sat Jan 12, 2013 5:27 pm

I've checked the page out. If you log on to the site with Google Chrome, it asks you if you want the page translated into English. Sadly it does'nt give the names of the Tigers, just general information about Amurs, scientific information, and the projects they are involved with
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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Laikipia on Sat Jan 12, 2013 5:29 pm

What a shame, but thanks for checking WS and getting the translation.

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  littlewid on Sat Jan 12, 2013 10:37 pm

That is a shame WS but yes, thanks from me too for checking it out Like a Star @ heaven hopefully Cremecat will be able to find out the names for us.

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Cremecat on Sat Jan 12, 2013 11:25 pm

Ok, now I have the names and more information of our Amurs!

The female tiger is called Lara, and she came from Austria. She was already in Korkeasaari when the male tiger arrived in late 2006. Lara was 6 years old then, so she is now about 12.

The male tiger is Czar (in Finnish "Tsaari"; we like to add an "i" to the end of most of the words Rolling Eyes ). He was born in 2004.
He was not rescued from a circus at all, but probably one of his ancestors was. In late 2007 it was discovered that around 30 Amur tigers in Europe had Sumatran genes and were therefore not pure. So they were not Belgal genes as I thought. (I promise that from now on I will never believe what the guides say! Shocked )
Czar's father was Mirko, and his grandfather was a hybrid tiger Roman.

Czar was born in Linton Zoo, and in 2006 he was moved first to Colchester Zoo and soon after that to Helsinki Zoo. I hope that he will be here for the rest of his life because he and Lara get on so well together. I read that Czar's sister Anoushka was sterilised after the sad news, and she had to move to another zoo to make room for a new female in Colchester, although she and the male tiger there (Igor) were very fond of each other. Sad

After all my findings I love Lara and Czar even more! I love you It really does not matter if they are pure or not as they are so adorable together. Okay there will not be little tigers, but maybe the other big cats take care of that part. tongue

Does this all bring Romeo and Juliet into your minds? Hugs

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Laikipia on Sun Jan 13, 2013 6:50 am

Cremecat, well done for all that research and for finding out their names for us. It's lovely to know their history and stories. As you say a real shame no tiger cubs but they are a lovely pair and Lara and Czar are definitely the Romeo and Juliet of the tiger world I love you

Thanks for letting us know so quickly.

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  whitestarling on Sun Jan 13, 2013 11:39 am

CC that is a brilliant piece of research your a Like a Star @ heaven and deserve a WAA
You the man accolade ( Sorry there's no you are the woman )
Thanks for getting us the names, and history of Lara & Czar, as you say a shame there will be no little ones, but the story certainly has echos of Romeo, and Juliet Hugs . Its a great shame when they are split up when they've bonded to each other so closely, and I really hope Lara, and Czar stay together for the rest of their lives
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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  littlewid on Sun Jan 13, 2013 5:43 pm

Hi Cremecat,

What an incredible story and as you say, it makes you love Lara & Czar even more and I agree that they dont have to be pure to be loved, they are both so adorable and obviously have great affection for each other and I too hope that they are allowed to live out their days together and not be seperated, that would be too sad indeed.

I know breeding programmes are there for a reason but it is storys like Anoushka's that upset me, man steps in to breed, when the cat is found to not be a viable breeder, they get discarded. I do appreciate that any zoo can only hold so many big cats etc but what a shame she had to be split from her partner but then again I suppose it would have been a waste of a male pure breeding Tiger, I suppose I just find it hard to be so calculated about breeding but then again if a species has to be saved hard decisions hve to be made. Lets hope that Anoushka is happy.

I love the fact that Czar is "Tsaari" very similar I think to Prin* Tiikari and Lara is the same as my little Neice Lara, so the names do make me smile a lot.

Thank you for all the research you did to get us this information Cremecat, you really are a Like a Star @ heaven

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Cremecat on Tue Jan 15, 2013 9:40 pm

Sad Sad news!
I heard a rumour that Czar and Lara will be separated after all. The zoo wants cubs... Sad

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Laikipia on Tue Jan 15, 2013 9:50 pm

Oh no that's awful news and can't be fair on them. I wonder if anything can be done to stop their separation? Letters/e-mails/petitions ?

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  whitestarling on Tue Jan 15, 2013 10:20 pm

That really is so sad if the rumour is true. It begs the question do the Zoo want Cubs because of the breeding issue, or do they want Cubs to increase visitor numbers ?. How long have they know that Czar was'nt a true genetic Amur, and where will he go as he is no use to any other Zoo as a breeding Male
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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  littlewid on Tue Jan 15, 2013 10:59 pm

I was going to pick this up in the morning as it is getting late but I thought it may be some exciting news so couldnt resist a peek and I find out it is very sad news.
I agree with what you say WS, is it for the conservation of the Tigers or is it an attraction for the zoo and who will have Czar as he is not breeding Tiger, who has space for for a non breeding animal. It is just so sad and they obviously so adore each other.
I am with Lai, is there anything we can do to try and stop this? The trouble is, even if they keep Czar he and Lara cant be together as they will get another male, even though they probably wont be kept together apart from breeding purposes it could still cause upset with the two males.
This isn't what we wanted to hear is it but if you get to hear of any petitions or anything Cremecat that we can help with, we surely will.
I feel very sad now this evening and it's going to be so upsetting for Lara and Czar and I am worried as to what will happen to Czar.
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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Cremecat on Wed Jan 16, 2013 8:30 am

Hello Lai, WS and Littlewid

I guess it is purely for breeding purposes. The zoo is focusing in the conservation of endangered species, and they take it very seriously – sometimes I even think they could be a little more visitor-minded. Czar came to the zoo originally for breeding purposes, and the fact that he is a hybrid came out after he had been there for some time. (Czar’s sister Anoushka already had one litter in Colchester Zoo before the news came; unfortunately the cubs died immediately.)

I also heard that according to the zoo staff Lara can be very aggressive towards Czar. I was surprised because I have seen only the gentle and kind Lara. But I don’t see them every day; maybe Lara just is a temperamental lady. Wink Pity still as Czar is so calm and peaceful.

They say the zoo is trying to find a new place for Czar where he could live “on exhibit”. I am sure they will make responsible decisions and see that he will not be sent to any disreputable zoo.

Sure this is sad, but I appreciate the Helsinki Zoo in all its seriousness. For example the Copenhagen Zoo has different principles, but that is another story… Shocked

If you are interested, here is a link to Korkeasaari web page where they tell about their work in English:
http://www.korkeasaari.fi/en/thezoo

I am planning to visit the zoo next weekend, if it is not too cold. The forecast for Sunday is -7 C degrees, which is okay if it is not too windy.

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  Laikipia on Wed Jan 16, 2013 8:38 am

Thanks for letting us know CC. I'll check out that link in a minute.

I hope you get to visit the zoo at the weekend, and that it isn't too cold!

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Re: Amur Tiger

Post  littlewid on Wed Jan 16, 2013 9:59 pm

Hi cremecat

From reading that link about the work they do, they really do seem very dedicated and responsible and it seems as togh there are exciting times ahead for the zoo with the new Butterfly house and the centre for injured wildlife, so from reding all of that, I am sure they will do their utmost to find Czar a really nice home.
As you say, you are not there every day so maybe Lara is a bit temperamental with him, we can only accept their word on that but they do seem very responsible so for now there is no reason to doubt them I suppose, it just seems a shame doesn't it.

Fingers crossed that it is not too cold next weekend so you can visit the zoo and see Lara and Czar......we will be hoping for pictures Very Happy . -7 is soooooo cold, it was -1 here today but some places had temps of -5 so we are almost on a par with you! but really we don't want to catch up with you, oh no, thats too cold.

Thanks for the link and the further info on Czar and Lara.

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