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Habitat destruction, poaching and other interaction with humans has reduced the number of Sumatran Tigers to less than 500.

The Sumatran Tiger, the smallest of all tiger sub-species, can be found only on the Indonesian island of Sumatra, an area that has recently undergone huge human development and agricultural growth. Rainforests in much of Asia, including Sumatra, are being cleared to make way for unsustainable palm oil plantations.

Taronga and Taronga Western Plains Zoos are part of a collective working to protect Sumatran Tigers in a number of ways. In 2010, the Chinese Year of the Tiger, a partnership between zoos around the world and the fundraising organisation 21st Century Tiger put enormous effort into raising awareness about the plight of tiger species. The partnership also generated funds for tiger conservation through habitat protection and regeneration and preventing the illegal trade in tigers and tiger products. Zoo-based research at Taronga and Taronga Western Plains Zoos compliments these projects. 

Sumatran Tiger

The Sumatran Tigers at Taronga Zoo have been temporarily moved to Taronga Western Plains Zoo while construction is underway for a new Sumatran Tiger Adventure exhibit. The new exhibit will be one of the Zoo's most exciting and engaging experiences and will inspire people to be more involved in direct action such as choosing products made with sustainable palm oil to help reduce deforestation in tiger habitat. In the meantime, Taronga will continue to be part of a regional conservation management plan for Sumatran Tigers including breeding, fundraising, research and community action to support sustainably produced Palm Oil.

Taronga is currently part of the "Raise Your Palm" campaign with other zoos and conservation agencies. To support sustainable Palm Oil sources, the first step is for Palm Oil to be listed as an ingredient on food labels. Currently the oil can be listed as "vegetable oil", so consumers do not know what is in the products they are purchasing.