Say hello to three new sumatran tiger cubs!

Three Sumatran tiger cubs were born on Wednesday, October 8 at 2:35, 3:45 and 4:05 a.m. The cubs appear to be healthy and nursing, said Dr. Karen Goodrowe Beck, the zoo’s general curator. Jaya is the mother; Malosi is the father.

The cubs are all female, and each weighs about 5 pounds.

See Jaya caring for her new cubs. Listen at the end for tiger cub squeaks!

Watch another video of the cubs crawling and nursing

Zoo staff is monitoring mother and cubs around the clock to ensure that she is caring for them. The new family is in a den behind the scenes in the Asian Forest Sanctuary area of the zoo. Staff can see and hear the cubs through a video camera.

It’s too early to say when the new family might be viewable to the public. Check back for updates!

big sister kali
Sumatran tiger cub Kali (kah-lee) is growing up fast! She was born April 17, 2013. Kali is frequently out on exhibit for exercise and play time, but she spends some of her day behind-the-scenes too. When Kali is out, you can find her in one of our outdoor Asian Forest Sanctuary exhibits, where zookeepers place toys or other enrichments designed to help her get exercise and hone her coordination skills.

Kali’s parents are Jaya and Malosi. She was one of only a few Sumatran tigers born in North American zoos in 2013. The number of Sumatran tigers in AZA accredited North American zoos hovers between 70 and 80. There are only an estimated 300 left in their native habitat on the Indonesian Island of Sumatra.

Learn more about Sumatran tigers!

Photos & Videos

Did you know?

Malayan tigers are slightly bigger, lighter in color, and lankier in body formation. They are native to the tropical forests of Peninsular Malaysia. The Tiger Conservation Campaign estimates that fewer than 500 remain in the wild.

Sumatran tigers are the smallest subspecies of tiger. Their fur is a darker orange than that of Malayan tigers. They are the only remaining tiger subspecies that lives on an island. They are critically endangered, and as few as 300 live in the wild.

Help Us Save Tigers

The world’s tigers are vanishing from the wild at an alarming rate. Poaching and human encroachment on tiger habitat are pushing these magnificent animals toward extinction.

Tigers were once widespread across the Indonesian island of Sumatra. Due to poaching and habitat loss over the past century, and especially in the past 50 years, only two large populations of Sumatran tigers now remain, in the Kerinci-Seblat landscape of west-central Sumatra and the massive greater Leuser landscape of northern Sumatra.

Over the past few years, we’ve helped fund the World Conservation Society's highly successful work in Leuser to reduce tiger-human conflict. In the not-so-distant past, approximately 15 Sumatran tigers per year were killed or unnecessarily removed from the forest due to tiger-human conflict. We’re excited to report that in the 7-month period since our last update, this number was reduced to zero!

The race to save these critically endangered species is urgent - and we would love your help! All money raised goes directly to support Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) efforts to reduce human-tiger conflict, stop poaching in Southeast Asia, and provide veterinary care to tigers caught in snares.

Call (253) 404-3657 or mail to:

The Zoo Society
The Race to Save Tigers
5400 North Pearl Street
Tacoma, WA 98407

Watch the Tiger Conservation Campaign video