Zoo's Sumatran tiger gives surprise birth to cub

Apr 18, 2013

No one at Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium knew Jaya, the Sumatran tiger, was expecting.

So imagine their surprise when the 9-year-old tiger gave birth to a healthy cub Tuesday night.

Weighing just 2.5 pounds, the female cub is said to be healthy, as is the mom. 

But Jaya doesn’t seem interested in motherhood. In fact, she's shown so little interest that zookeepers on Thursday decided to hand-raise the cub. The newborn is being bottle-fed a special formula every three hours.

“The cub needed nourishment its mother wasn’t providing,” said zoo general curator Karen Goodrowe Beck.

The cub's father, 4‐year‐old Malosi, lives in the zoo's Asian Forest Sanctuary with Jaya and several other tigers. 

The cub has not yet been named.