Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens is excited to announce the addition of a Malayan Tiger.
Bashir, a 13-year-old, male critically endangered Malayan Tiger arrived at the Zoo in early April and has been adjusting
well to his new home.
“Bashir is acclimating nicely and at his own pace,” said Tirzah Nichols, Senior Mammal Keeper. “We pay close attention to
his comfort levels in his new surroundings, monitor his progress and only introduce him to new areas when he is ready.”
The keeper staff at the Zoo have been spending time developing a positive relationship with Bashir and establishing trust
while he settles into his new home. According to the staff, Bashir is relaxed, but very charismatic, vocal and expressive.
He enjoys his toys and exploring new environments.
Bashir joined the Zoo through the Species Survival Plan (SSP) between accredited zoos and aquariums. Tigers play a critical
role in their natural habitat by balancing and maintaining a thriving ecosystem. There are estimated to be less than 150
Malayan Tigers left in the wild.
“It can be a long process getting an animal acclimated to their new environment and even longer to go through the steps
of introducing animals to each other,” said Sheryl Staaden, Assistant Curator of Mammals. “Tigers are solitary by nature,
so they are only together for a brief time for breeding. The timing of an introduction is important with different steps in
the process accomplished prior to the actual introduction.”
SSP looks at the genetics of captive populations to make the best pairings to ensure these endangered species thrive.
Bashir is recommended to breed with our current Malayan female, Cinta, and they will hopefully be introduced in the
“Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens is excited to participate in such significant conversation efforts,” said Tirzah Nichols. “With
a critically endangered status, species like the Malayan Tiger can significantly benefit from our joined efforts with other
institutions to help ensure their future survival.”
Bashir made his debut on May 5, in the award-winning Land of the Tiger exhibit. Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens is open
daily from 9am – 5pm. Visit jacksonvillezoo.org for admission tickets.
About Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens
For over 100 years, the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens has aimed to inspire the discovery and appreciation of wildlife
through innovative experiences. Starting in 1914 with an animal collection of one red deer fawn, the Zoo now has more
than 2,000 rare and exotic animals and 1,000 species of plants, boasting the largest botanical garden in Northeast
Florida. The Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens is a nonprofit organization and a portion of every ticket sold goes to the over
45 conservation initiatives Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens support around the world, and here in NE Florida. JZG is proud to
be an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. For more information, visit jacksonvillezoo.org.