Last tiger at Paignton Zoo has died

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(Last Updated On: December 2, 2020)

Paignton Zoo have announced today that female Sumatran tiger Shakira has been put to sleep following health issues.

18-year-old Shakira arrived at Paignton Zoo in 2014 and was paired with the late Fabi, who was put to sleep earlier this year due to illness.

The pair had 3 cubs, 2 sadly passed away shortly after birth. These were the first tiger cubs born at Paignton Zoo since 2009. Cub Luca was moved to Edinburgh Zoo as part of the endangered breeding programme.

Shakira was the last of the tigers at Paignton Zoo but it has been confirmed, two young female Sumatran tigers will be coming to the zoo.

A spokesperson said on social media today: “We are sad to share the news that female Sumatran tiger Shakira has passed away. At over 18 years of age, Shakira was very elderly for a big cat. As her age started to catch up with her in the past few weeks, she was on a lot of medication for deteriorating health and the difficult but kindest decision was made by our animal care teams to put her to sleep.

“Born at Berlin Tierpark in July 2002, Shakira arrived at Paignton in 2014 to be paired with late male Fabi, as part of the breeding programme for this Critically Endangered species. As she was hand-reared, Shakira was a very lively, people-orientated tiger and was easy to spot with her wide-eyed, beautiful face. She will be greatly missed.

“We are aware that Shakira’s passing means that we currently do not have any tigers at the zoo, as young tiger Lucu moved to Edinburgh Zoo last month as part of the European Endangered Species breeding programme. The positive news is that we can confirm that we will continue to house Sumatran tigers, as two young female tigers will be joining us – please keep an eye on our social media channels for updates coming soon!

“We can also share that there will be some changes with our resident lions, siblings Arya and Yali; we will update you when we have confirmed more of our plans.

“Thank you for your ongoing support and we really appreciate your patience and understanding at this time.”

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