Ballarat Wildlife Park tigers help raise awareness for wild Sumatran tigers on International Tiger Day

SMELL: Satu investigates one of the scents placed around his enclosure as part of enrichment sessions at Ballarat Wildlife Park. Picture: Kate Healy
SMELL: Satu investigates one of the scents placed around his enclosure as part of enrichment sessions at Ballarat Wildlife Park. Picture: Kate Healy

Ballarat Wildlife Park's Sumatran tigers Satu and Maneki enjoyed a variety of special treats to help raise awareness of the plight of their wild cousins and mark International Tiger Day on Wednesday.

Sumatran tigers are critically endangered as a result of poaching, deforestation and human conflict, with just 400 to 600 Sumatran tigers left in the wild.

To celebrate International Tiger Day, Satu and Maneki were treated to a range of enrichment activities including exposure to different scents and foods.

Coffee and spice scents were placed around their enclosures, whipped cream, pumpkin and bones were scattered for them to find and they enjoyed their favourite treat of blood mixed with gelatin.

Victoria's Ballarat Wildlife Park keeper Julia Castles said it was important to mark International Tiger Day to "pass the message on to as many people as possible to hopefully create positive change for the species".

"The more people that hear about it the more they might want to help out either by sponsoring a tiger or helping to support breeding programs, conservation projects and research," she said.

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Satu and Maneki have enrichment every day to keep their minds active.

"Every morning they enter their enclosure they have something different and interactive. We've got to keep them stimulated in all sorts of ways so they can display their natural behaviour to hunt and forage."

This story Tigers Satu and Maneki have fun to help their wild cousins first appeared on The Courier.