Join our zoo community

Tigers Subspecies in the UK

Discussion in 'United Kingdom' started by stulch, 1 Sep 2013.

Tags:
  1. stulch

    stulch Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    9 Aug 2009
    Posts:
    294
    Location:
    Leicestershire
    I was just wondering how many of the five remaining tiger subspecies do we have in UK zoos?

    I know we have Sumatran at London Zoo (and many other zoos) and Amur at Whipsnade Zoo (and many other Zoos) but I was wondering about the rest.
     
  2. DesertRhino150

    DesertRhino150 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    15 Jul 2010
    Posts:
    2,227
    Location:
    Essex
    To the best of my knowledge, the Amur and Sumatran tigers are the only pure subspecies in the UK at this moment in time- all the others are 'zoo' Bengals- a Bengal hybridised with another subspecies.

    Although the RSCC and (possibly) Hamerton will also be bringing in Malayan tigers in the not-too-distant future, from what I gather.
     
  3. pipaluk

    pipaluk Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    10 Feb 2012
    Posts:
    4,240
    Location:
    England
    As far as I am aware there are currently no other sub-species in the UK, though on the RSCC thread it states they are rumoured to be getting Malayan in near future.
    Sorry, this was posted a minute after the one above!
     
  4. TeaLovingDave

    TeaLovingDave Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    16 May 2010
    Posts:
    15,861
    Location:
    Wilds of Northumberland
    For general record, the last certain and undisputed pure Bengal tiger died at Bristol Zoo in 1985.

    Malayan, Indochinese and Javan tigers have all been held at London Zoo in the distant past; the former of these species has also been held at Edinburgh, although I believe there might have been isolated misidentified individuals at other collections in the past, as some impure Sumatran tigers in the UK (those at WMZ spring to mind) have been tested to have relatively recent Malatan ancestry.
     
  5. stulch

    stulch Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    9 Aug 2009
    Posts:
    294
    Location:
    Leicestershire
    Many, many thanks for your replies. Hopefully the hybridised tigers aren't being breed so over time more places will be available for pure tigers. :)
     
  6. IanRRobinson

    IanRRobinson Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    2 Dec 2010
    Posts:
    1,332
    Location:
    Northamptonshire
    This is why I get so cross about white Tigers (and now Lions) - or to be precise, the dorks who breed them. These animals are taking up space that cats of genuine conservation importance require.
     
  7. zoomaniac

    zoomaniac Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    17 Apr 2009
    Posts:
    1,211
    Location:
    Schwerzenbach, ZH, Switze
    Afaik, the White Lions are pure Transvaal Lions (Panthera leo krugeri), aren't they?
     
  8. IanRRobinson

    IanRRobinson Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    2 Dec 2010
    Posts:
    1,332
    Location:
    Northamptonshire
    H'mm. No idea, but I don't see them as being released into anywhere in SE Africa, do you? They were a very rare mutation that got into captivity and are being bred to make money.

    Those who like mutants can get white peafowl or budgies as far as I'm concerned; they are cheaper to keep and don't get in the way of breeding programmes!
     
  9. zoomaniac

    zoomaniac Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    17 Apr 2009
    Posts:
    1,211
    Location:
    Schwerzenbach, ZH, Switze
    If they are "natural" mutants from the same subspecies, they have - imo - their "value" for pure-line-breeding in captivity AS LONG as the goal isn't "White Lions only". You wont stop breeding with a - say - pure Javan or Ceylon Leopard only because it is black (melanistic), would you?
     
  10. zoogiraffe

    zoogiraffe Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Sep 2007
    Posts:
    6,411
    Location:
    Middlewich,Cheshire U.K
    All White Lions are pure,just very inbred from about 4 animals!
     
  11. TeaLovingDave

    TeaLovingDave Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    16 May 2010
    Posts:
    15,861
    Location:
    Wilds of Northumberland
    This value is severely compromised due to the level of inbreeding depression within the population, as noted by zoogiraffe.
     
  12. Brum

    Brum Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    27 May 2011
    Posts:
    3,607
    Location:
    Birmingham, UK
    I agree with this entirely, I don't agree with breeding generic black leopards but the occasional naturally occuring mutation is fine. I'm pretty sure that no-one would argue with mating a king cheetah either!
    And as mentioned by zg, white lions are pure but extremely inbred. I would think that maybe introducing some "tawny" blood into the gene pool may be in the subspecies best interest! (And I'm sure they would still throw out the occasional mutant to please Joe Public! ;))
     
  13. ThylacineAlive

    ThylacineAlive Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    20 Oct 2012
    Posts:
    10,424
    Location:
    Connecticut, U.S.A.
    Are you certain these were Indochinese? Did they collect them from a different location from where all the other "Indochinese" Tigers were collected?

    ~Thylo:cool:
     
  14. TeaLovingDave

    TeaLovingDave Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    16 May 2010
    Posts:
    15,861
    Location:
    Wilds of Northumberland
    Haven't the foggiest; this was over a century ago I believe. The fact that it is known they also held Malayan suggests to me that someone has already worked out that particular holding was indeed Indochinese.
     
  15. IanRRobinson

    IanRRobinson Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    2 Dec 2010
    Posts:
    1,332
    Location:
    Northamptonshire
    My guess is that someone looked at where the relevant Tigers came from. Tigers from Burma would have been deemed to be P.t.corbetti; those from Malaya P.t.jacksoni.
     
  16. Jordan-Jaguar97

    Jordan-Jaguar97 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    13 Jun 2010
    Posts:
    2,662
    Location:
    Burnley, Lancashire, UK.
    Yup, they are pure bred however inbred from four individuals. The current collections which hold them are WHF/Paradise and West Mid's SP.


    Amur and Sumatran are currently the only pure-bred tigers in the UK, although as mentioned RSCC are due to receive Malayan tigers in the future. :D
     
  17. Nanook

    Nanook Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    8 Nov 2008
    Posts:
    940
    Location:
    U.K.
    For many years the late Jack Corney, owner of the Isle of Wight Zoo (Sandown) claimed some of his tigers were partly Chinese. Though they did look unusual or different visually to his many other Tigers at that time I did have some doubts over his claims.
     
  18. TeaLovingDave

    TeaLovingDave Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    16 May 2010
    Posts:
    15,861
    Location:
    Wilds of Northumberland
    Being as these individuals were later selectively bred together to produce a "bred-back" individual later claimed by first Sandown and then later Wildlife Heritage Foundation to have been a pure Bengal Tiger, it wouldn't have been the last time they were passed off as something more prestigious than they actually were :p
     
  19. Nanook

    Nanook Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    8 Nov 2008
    Posts:
    940
    Location:
    U.K.
    When I spoke to Jack Corney about his tigers, he was adamant that a couple of his tigers were part Chinese, and they did look different to me - though I don`t know the history of those tigers he was referring to, he did not mention Bengals on this occasion.
    (Though this thread is about Bengals and pure stock anyway, I am not sure why I mentioned it, only out of general interest).