The San Diego Zoo Safari Park’s animal family has just expanded by two!
Earlier this month, the San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance celebrated the birth of two Sumatran tiger cubs, the zoo announced in a press release this week.
Per the establishment, the new additions — a female and a male — were born on July 12 to first-time mother Diana.
The two new tigers, who have yet to be named, “appear strong, and are nursing frequently,” the zoo said, adding that Diana “is an extremely attentive and gentle mother.”
Diana and her cubs are set to remain in her den for several weeks, during a time that the zoo describes as “crucial” to allow them to “bond with and learn from their mother.” Wildlife care specialists estimate the newborns will be able to leave the den when they are 8 to 10 weeks old.
According to the zoo, Sumatran tigers are listed as Critically Endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species, with only an estimated 400 to 600 remaining in the world.
The recent births mark the first of the tiger species to be born at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park’s Tull Family Tiger Trail habitat in seven years, the zoo said.
The animals, who will celebrate Global Tiger Day on July 29, were birthed as a result of a breeding recommendation through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Sumatran Tiger Species Survival Plan (SSP), the establishment added.
“We are elated about the birth of these tiger cubs,” Lisa Peterson, the executive director of the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, said. “It has been years since we’ve had cubs at Tiger Trail, and we can’t wait to share them with the community.”
Added Peterson: “These births are so important to the conservation of this species. Our hope is these cubs will provide an opportunity for our guests to gain a greater appreciation for tigers and the important need to conserve them in their native habitats.”