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Maya and the cubs

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
My niece Maya, visiting with the cubs (that's me with her). These are some of the younger cubs which came from the big USDA raid some months back. Three of the big cats came in pregnant and one got that way right after they arrived (before the males could get their vasectomies. That's been taken care of so there won't be any more!!!) These cubs are 7 weeks old in this picture (taken a week ago.) We have a total of 15 cubs from 4 litters: 4 tigers and 11 lions.


post #2 of 23
Wow! What neat pictures...your niece is so lucky to have contact with these great animlas at such an age! Thank you so much for sharing!
post #3 of 23
Oh wow! Look at the sheer joy on her face. What an experience...one I'm sure will live with her forever. What a lucky little girl!!
post #4 of 23
Awww.. BTW, I didn't know there was a wildcat rescue around here?!
post #5 of 23
OMG!!!!! MORE, MORE, MORE!!!!!
post #6 of 23
George?

Did you hear anything about a white tiger cub that has a bad hip problem and no one wants her because of the expensive surgery? Is that something your organization might be able to help with? If so would you email me please?
post #7 of 23
Aw how cute! And she looks so happy too!
post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by turtlecat
Awww.. BTW, I didn't know there was a wildcat rescue around here?!
There are at least three that I know of.

1. One is very small and for small cats only in Chatham County. Don't know them personally, but I have indirect contact with them.

2. Carnivore Preservation Trust, also in Chatham County. They have had some rather serious issues over the past few years but have a new board and seem to be doing a good job of getting themselves back together.

3. Conservators' Center, in Caswell County (just north of Mebane) (that's the group I'm with.) This is a close second in size and growing. If you're interested in seeing the facility I will be glad to give you a tour, but it must be scheduled. Sunday afternoons are the best for me.

George
post #9 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkdaisy226
Aw how cute! And she looks so happy too!
When they visit (from Oregon) Maya always wants to "see the animals", so we usually try to spend a couple of hours out there during one of their visits. Since we don't breed the big cats it's unusual for us to have cubs, so this is probably a once in a lifetime thing for her. She was thrilled.
post #10 of 23
George, seeing as I am in North Carolina as well, is there any way I can get a tour and meet those beautiful creatures before I go home to NZ?

I love the look on your neice's face, she looks so happy to see them!
post #11 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwideus
George, seeing as I am in North Carolina as well, is there any way I can get a tour and meet those beautiful creatures before I go home to NZ?
Where in NC are you and when do you leave? We're located just north of Mebane (near Chapel Hill.) I'm always happy to give tours. As I mentioned, Sundays afternoons are generally best for me. I WILL be there this Sunday (the day after Christmas.)
post #12 of 23
I am in Asheville and I am not leaving til August, 05. Plenty of time to figure something out.
post #13 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwideus
I am in Asheville and I am not leaving til August, 05. Plenty of time to figure something out.
OK, let me know and I'll be happy to show you around. If you'd like to see the cubs up close it will have to be when they're small, once they get to a certain size the direct contact will be stopped. Our youngest, and should be last, litter is only 3 weeks old (the ones in the picture are 7 weeks.)

You're about 4 hours away up there in the mountains. Pretty country up there.

George
post #14 of 23
Thanks for sharing those pictures.
post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by CharmsDad
OK, let me know and I'll be happy to show you around. If you'd like to see the cubs up close it will have to be when they're small, once they get to a certain size the direct contact will be stopped. Our youngest, and should be last, litter is only 3 weeks old (the ones in the picture are 7 weeks.)

You're about 4 hours away up there in the mountains. Pretty country up there.

George
George - thanks so much for the offer - we can't make it this sunday because hubby has to work at church, but is the Monday or the following Sunday available?
post #16 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwideus
George - thanks so much for the offer - we can't make it this sunday because hubby has to work at church, but is the Monday or the following Sunday available?
I can work with either. I'll send you a PM.

George
post #17 of 23
Lovely pics, the little girl is cute!
Thanks for sharing.
post #18 of 23
Thread Starter 
turtlecat,
Since you're also here in NC, Kiwideus and her husband are meeting me on Monday (Dec 27) in Mebane to get a tour. If you're interested in joining us PM me and I'll give you directions. Not sure how old you are, but if you're under 18 you will absolutely need a parent with you. (If you're over 18 please disregard and accept my apology, this is not intended as any kind of slam or criticism, just our policy.)

If you're more comfortable bringing a friend, please feel free, just let me know. But anyone under 18 must have a parent or guardian with them who can legally sign a waiver and be responsible for them.

Of course, if we get slammed with snow we'll have to reschedule.

George
post #19 of 23
awww... i wish i was there to go. I nearly had the opportunity to pat a white baby tiger in Australia (dreamworld) but when the 2 year old patted it, it went vicious and i lost my turn i was really upset. because they are the few left white tigers in the world!!
post #20 of 23
What gorgeous pics, and your niece sure does look happy!
post #21 of 23
George, are you a temporary holding facility until someone comes around that can provide more space for these big cats?
post #22 of 23
Thread Starter 
Most are permanently housed there. The lions were originally to be temporary, but the site which was to take them fell through (long story) and they are now permanently at this facility. They are currently in our "rescue" cages while larger enclosures are being built. (The rescue cages are 15 x 60, not ideal but adequate for the short term.) The lions were housed four to a 20 x 20 cage where they came from, with two cages sharing a wall. (The lions apparently constantly fought across that wall, and all were beat up when they arrived.) The rescue cages will be redesigned after the lions are moved to larger enclosures. All these pregnant animals were not expected, but fortunately we do have some lead time for fund raising and construction. The adult males have been surgically steralized (vasectomies) so we need not worry about more litters.

The cubs will be divided into logical groups and, for the next few months, stay in the rescue cages as they grow. Another nearby facility (also a non-profit) is interested in a group of lions and we have worked out a tentative agreement for placement (technically a permanent loan, with some strong restrictions.) We have partial funding for some additional future construction and have potential sources for more, but it's a constant process. 4 rescue cages, including den boxes, cost $22,000 in materials only. A single full sized lion/tiger enclosure runs around $12,000 (lions are actually slightly more.) A single enclosure is for two tigers or a small group of lions (4 normally). We're able to weld up our own trap doors and have had a good bit of lumber and other construction supplies donated, which helps (we don't use lumber for the large animal cages, but do use it for den boxes, platforms and other enrichment, storage buildings, etc.)

Other ongoing or pending projects:
-We're to get a young Jaguar late next summer or next fall. I believe sponsorship is tentatively lined up, but not sure.
-The wolf enclosure is to be expanded, tentative projection $6,000 in materials (may be more.) I'm working on the funding (I directly oversee all canine projects.)
-We are scheduled to be sending one of our female New Guinea Singing Dogs to the Frankfurt (Germany) Zoo in exchange for one of their young males (this is planned to strengthen the gene pool.) Our NGSD enclosure will likely require another expansion. (All breedings are coordinated through the central registry held by the New Guinea Singing Dog Society.)
-We have very tentatively agreed to accept a retired pair of African Wild Dogs from the US program (controlled through Cincinnati Zoo) in late 2006 or early 2007.
-We are one of only 4 US facilities, and the only one not a major zoo, approved by the Republic of Vietnam to receive their unique and endangered Civets as part of their controlled breeding program. (The first two arrived recently.)

Money and volunteers drive everything. We always need responsible volunteers. (We do not allow anyone to go in the cages with the big cats, so don't ask (cubs are an exception, up to a certian age.)) We also always are looking for funding. As a non-profit organization donations are generally tax deductable, but people will need to consult their accountant or tax attorney to be sure in their particular situation.

Not fully up to date, but here's the web site:
http://www.conservatorscenter.org
post #23 of 23
All I can say is WOW and I'll never complain about my dinky litterboxes. They must be a huge responcibility to care for properly!
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