New Critically Endangered Sumatran Tiger at Smithsonian's National Zoo
The Smithsonian's National Zoo is home to a new male Sumatran tiger. Sparky is acclimating to his new home and can be seen at the Great Cats Exhibit. The 12-year-old tiger came to the Zoo on a breeding recommendation from the Sumatran Tiger Species Survival Plan. Sparky has never sired a litter of cubs, and the Zoo's female tiger Damai is a proven breeder and mother. Damai and Sparky have visual access to each other in their behind-the-scenes area at the Great Cats Exhibit. They will be gradually introduced to each other in the coming months in hopes that they will eventually breed. Damai has shown affiliative behaviors, such as chuffing (a friendly greeting vocalization) to Sparky. Sumatran tigers are listed as critically endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Native to Indonesia, approximately 400 remain in the wild.