The new Tiger Trek experience is now open at Taronga Zoo Sydney!
This week we said ‘see you later’ to our three remaining tigers, Jumilah, Kartika and Kembali as they headed off to their temporary home at Taronga Western Plains Zoo.
For the last three weeks we did special training with the cats so they would be comfortable walking into their travel crates for a food reward. When the day came for the big move our training paid off and everything went off without a hitch.
Our colleagues in Dubbo are very excited to be looking after our group for the time being and one of our keepers travelled with them on the journey and will be working with them during their stay in Dubbo.
While we’re sad to see the tigers leave Sydney, we’re at the same time excited about the exciting new developments about to take place. Our Sumatran Tiger Adventure exhibit is due to open in 2017 and the spacious new exhibit will allow us to better manage our successful breeding program for the amazing Sumatran Tigers.
I’ve been lucky enough to be able to work with tigers for the last 19 years. I was here in 2003 when our female Jumilah was born, and it’s been nice to see her grow from a tiny young cub to a beautiful mother. She’s looked after her three cubs really well and she’s an amazing animal to work with.
I very much enjoy working with tigers; each tiger has their individual likes and dislikes. They are generally a bit suspicious of new keepers. New Keepers must always earn the trust of the tigers as tigers are quite sensitive to new people. Working with one of the most critically endangered on the planet has been an honour for me. Having these animals as your colleagues is an amazing experience. We will miss Jumilah and the others, but we look forward to seeing them again soon.
Senior Carnivore Keeper, Justine Powell.