A TRIO of abandoned tiger cubs have been given a new mum – a fake life-size tigress teddy complete with inbuilt MILK bottles.
The cuddly life-size teddy has fake nipples made from milk bottles hidden in the teddy’s fur to create nipples the baby tigers can actually suckle.
Mridul Pathak, director of Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve, said: “The cubs were born about 40 days back.
“After locating the strayed cubs following the alleged killing of their mother, we placed them in an enclosure in the forest area where this specially-designed dummy toy tigress was kept.
“The dummy tigress has been fitted with artificial nipples and milk bottles hidden in the foam and cotton wool.”After the initial hiccups the cubs started to suckle as if they are having it from their own mother.
“In a bid to reduce the human interference, we decided to keep the cubs with the dummy toy tigress.”
The mother of the cubs was found dead outside the reserve forest area in Shahdol district on January 19 and five people had been arrested.Staff say the tiger cubs have taken well to their new mum and it is hoped they can eventually be released.
The staff say the tiger cubs have taken well to their new mum Mr Pathak added: “They not only get food through this dummy tigress but they also play with it.”More is required to reduce human interference further and we are thinking in this direction.”