The physical condition of the tiger cubs is good. Cinderella’s rehabilitation process is almost finished and it awaits the release back into the wild at the end of April – the beginning of May. The cubs’ release is planned either for the August – September of this year or for the next spring.
Those were the discussion topics at the recent meeting of tiger specialists from A.N. Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution, Russian Academy of Sciences, WCS, Inspection Tiger and Phoenix Fund.
The experts are considering releasing the cubs in one of the wildlife refuges in the Arkharinsky district of the Amur region if special conditions would be observed. For that purpose, on a territory of more than ten thousand hectares, a high density of ungulates – 25-30 animals per one thousand hectares – should be achieved through a complex of biotechnical arrangements. It is very important to construct a temporary enclosure with live prey at the release site to give the cubs an opportunity to adapt to a new environment and make sure they will not starve after they return to natural habitat. At the same time, the specialists would also examine and analyse other potential release sites.
The tiger cubs now live in a big enclosure in the rehabilitation centre in Alekseevka village. Although they have a neighbour – another rehabilitated tiger Zolushka, the two enclosures are rather distanced. Soon an orphaned tiger cub from Khabarovsk centre Utyos may join the residents of the rehab. Later the four tigers would be paired for better social adaptation and would be released by twos.