Sumatran tiger killed in zoo by proposed mate during first meeting

A female Sumatran tiger has been viciously killed by it proposed mate during their first meeting at ZSL London Zoo on Friday (UK Time).

Ten days ago, Sumatran tiger Asim was moved to ZSL London Zoo as part of a European conservation breeding programme, to potentially mate with the zoo's "beloved Sumatran tigress Melati".

The tigers were then kept in adjourning enclosures, intended to allow the pair to see each other and slowly become used to each other's presence before they met.

After observing "positive signs" about the tigers' reaction to each other, zoo experts believed it was the right time to introduce each other.

However, in a statement on Friday, the Zoo declared the date had not gone as planned, with the pair engaging in an "aggressive interaction" prompting staff to implement a prepared response using loud noises, flares and alarms.

While the zookeepers were able to secure Asim, they were too late, finding that the male tiger had overpowered Melati who had died.

"Everyone at ZSL London Zoo is devastated by the loss of Melati, and we are heartbroken by this turn of events".

According to the World Wildlife Fund, Sumatran tigers are critically endangered, with less 400 in existence.

In a tweet, the zoo said its Tiger Territory would remain closed while the zoo's team focussed on caring for Asim.


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