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Tiger cubs meet their public

tiger cub at the St. Louis zoo. 2008
Rachel Heidenry | St. Louis Beacon archives

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: August 5, 2008 - The Amur tiger was formerly known as the Siberian Tiger. According to the Zoo's website, there are "fewer than 500 (of these tigers) living in small populations of far eastern Russia and northeast China. Loss of habitat due to logging activities, human encroachment and poaching are the main threats to their survival in the wild."

Kalista, who is seven years old, is a first-time mom. And a litter of five is unusually large. But the Zoo says she has been an "excellent mother." 

crowd looks at tiger mom and cubs at St. Louis Zoo 2008
Credit Rachel Heidenry | St. Louis Beacon archive

The cubs, who have not yet been named, will be outside with their mother from 10 a.m. to noon daily, weather permitting. On their first day in the large enclosures, they seemed tentative at first, but soon started exploring.

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