April didn't go out like a lamb — and May began with a tiger.
The Minnesota Zoo on Monday announced the birth of an endangered female Amur tiger cub. The cub, born April 26, is being raised by staff after officials determined "the mother was not showing the quality of maternal care that staff felt she needed to successfully raise the cub."
According to the zoo, the Amur is the largest of all cats and a "top predator of far eastern Asia. Amur tigers are carnivores, eating mostly large mammals such as deer and wild boar. They will travel over extensive forest territories in search of food."
While poaching is the primary threat to their survival, conservation efforts have increased their numbers from as low as 20 or 30 around 1940 to approximately 500 today, officials said.
The female cub will remain behind the scenes while Zoo staff cares for her. The zoo expects to set up a live web cam to view the tiger cub. Seventy-two percent of Amur tiger cubs survive the first 30 days.
Almost exactly a year ago, an Amur tiger living at the Minnesota Zoo died unexpectedly.
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