Chicken-Fried News: ‘Meow’ cam

tigercubEveryone can agree the internet is one of technology’s greatest inventions. It’s a researcher’s and time-waster’s paradise, full of history, science, statistics, news, social media, comment sections, memes and videos of adorable animals.

Oklahoma City Zoological Park and Botanical Garden decided to add its contribution to the wealth of cat videos on the web recently with its Tiger Cub Cam, and we’re not complaining.

OKC Zoo’s Sumatran tiger — or, as a pint-size Chicken-Fried News relative calls them, “big meow” — Lola gave birth to three male cubs July 9. A few weeks later, the zoo became home to Zoya, a female Amur (Siberian) tiger born July 10, because her mother at the Philadelphia Zoo rejected her and she needed an adoptive mother’s care and to be socialized.

On its website, OKC Zoo explained that it’s common for first-time tiger mothers to lack maternal behavior required for proper care and both zoos decided moving Zoya to OKC was the best thing for her. Oklahoma City Zoo’s Sumatran tiger family was chosen because Sumatran tigers and Amur tigers are similar subspecies.

Donna Evernham, curator of carnivores and ungulates at Philadelphia Zoo, told KFOR.com that there are fewer than 500 Amur tigers in the wild, and OKC Zoo’s website says there are also fewer than 400-500 Sumatran tigers in the wild.

Feline lovers can watch Zoya bond with her adoptive siblings — Eko, Ramah and Gusti — feed and sleep to their hearts’ content 24 hours a day. Zoya is the cub with lighter-colored fur, as Amur tigers are light orange with thick black stripes and Sumatrans are dark orange with thin stripes.

OKC Zoo’s website said the cubs will most likely venture outside by mid-September.

It isn’t the first live web cam featuring baby animals the zoo has launched; the world was able to watch baby elephant Achara 24 hours a day in 2014.

Visit okczoo.org/tigercam to watch the “meows” in action in their den.

Gazette Staff

This article was written by the Oklahoma Gazette staff. To reach an editor, please email jchancellor@okgazette.com with this story headline in your subject line.

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