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Female cub of Amur tiger, the world’s biggest cat, rescued from poachers trap in Russian Far East

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26 October 2021


Female cub of Amur tiger, the world’s biggest cat, rescued from poachers trap in Russian Far East. Picture: Amur Tiger Centre

A female cub aged between three and four months old got one of its paws caught in an illegal trap, set by poachers to catch badgers in the woods of the Dalnerechensky district of Primorsky region.  

Luckily a local resident noticed the trapped cub, and reported it to wildlife protection authorities.

The site where the cub was found was a ‘badger town’, a multi-level system of badger holes and tunnels with 11 traps - prohibited by Russian hunting rules -  set all around it.

Traces of the mother tiger were all around the site, rescuers said. 

The adult tigress must have been trying to help the cub, and only left the site when she heard people coming. 

She stayed nearby all the time, not attacking the humans freeing her cub.

‘It must have been a child-like curiosity that led the cub to follow the mother and to check badger holes. It couldn’t get out of the trap by itself, and mother was just as powerless. We knew that the mother tigress stayed close all the time, so we acted as fast and as carefully as we possibly could not to provoke ann attack,’ said Sergey Aramilev, general director of the Amur Tiger Center. 

Female cub of Amur tiger, the world’s biggest cat, rescued from poachers trap in Russian Far East

Female cub of Amur tiger, the world’s biggest cat, rescued from poachers trap in Russian Far East

Female cub of Amur tiger, the world’s biggest cat, rescued from poachers trap in Russian Far East

Female cub of Amur tiger, the world’s biggest cat, rescued from poachers trap in Russian Far East

Female cub of Amur tiger, the world’s biggest cat, rescued from poachers trap in Russian Far East

Female cub of Amur tiger, the world’s biggest cat, rescued from poachers trap in Russian Far East. Pictures: Amur Tiger Centre 

The team of local wildlife protection experts sedated the young tigress and released her paw.

The trap pulled off  one of the front claws, causing minor injuries - most likely the cub got them when trying to free herself.

No health or life-threatening wounds were found, so the rescuers decided to leave the Amur tigress in the wild.

‘We are certain that the cub has already joined its mother, and that it will be more cautious in the future. We received the information just in time to be able to save its life. The longer she was in the trap, the more trauma she could inflict on herself while trying to get free. Under the most unfavourable scenario, the predator could have died from dehydration,’ Sergey Aramilev said. 

The Amur tiger is the world’s largest big cat. 

About 600 grown up animals - 95% of the world population - live in Primorsky and Khabarovsk regions, the Amur region and the Jewish Autonomous region in the Far East of Russia. 

Some Amur tigers live in China and in North Korea. The next tiger census in Russia is due in winter 2021-2022.


The team of PRNCO 'Tiger Center' have rehabilitated 7 tigers and 1 African lion.

Of them, 6 tigers were released into their natural habitat. Five became fully adapted to life in the wild.

The first female Zolushka (Cinderella), which had passed the full course of rehabilitation, was observed with two cubs in December 2015. The tigers Svetlaya (Bright) and Boris, released in 2014, formed a couple. 

The Centre was founded September 19, 2012.

Comments (35)

. . . 10 4, 1 43 PRNCO "Tiger Center". Such humane advocacy matters exceptionally over non-belligerent acts despising good expectations requiring sanity-CHILD

Roel Bianan y Acaso, Philippines
29/10/2021 06:40
Thank you, everyone involved in helping this beautiful cub return to her mother. Mankind has destroyed so much of the earth's flora and fauna. We need to be conservators, not destroyers. It is wonderful that there are still many people who are compassionate about all of the earths' creatures, and the habitats in which they live.
Ann Donaldson, Scotland
10/11/2021 02:29
So vigilant, caring and compassionate for the local resident to alarm the rescue team. Thank goodness that the Amur Centre Team arrived in time to save the poor distressed and injured cub.

Even more remarkable and incredible is the fact that the Amur Centre Team could carry out their rescue work with the baby, without the mother tigress becoming aggressive or attacking anyone. This goes to show that humanity and wildlife can perfectly co.habit where there is mutual respect, tolerance, trust and love for one another,

RRR Roars of thanks and huge big Tiger hugs and kisses to the Amur Wildlife Centre and their dedicated team, for all the fantastic Rescue, Rehabilitaion and Release (RRRR's!) work they do; to save our majestic Furry Friends from extinction...
Anonymous, Switzerland
31/10/2021 23:34
The work this group does is incredible!
Lee , USA
31/10/2021 01:45
Am a Animal Rights actiVIST JANE HAS A HUGE SANCUARY IN AFRICA FOR BIG CATS AM A # 1 SUPPORTER OF Big Cat PUBLIC Safety ACT an #1 supporter of Big Cat rescue in Tampa FL there are only 7000 Tigersi the wild. I hope they pass this law from Baltimore Md am their voice an fight of their rights.
May Nace, United States
30/10/2021 21:21
No one had the common sense to leave some food ,water and a tent???
Noname, Notutopia
30/10/2021 11:13
Thank you for reaching these beautiful animals! As far as trapping goes, all traps worldwide should be banned. Traps and snares are not species specific and humans that set them don't check them which causes pain and suffering and death to the animal caught. Humans need to start being more conscious that all animals have feelings and deserve to live unharrassed on Earth! Humans are not more important than any other species!
Jan Bullock, MontanaUS
30/10/2021 07:21
thank you to all who acted on saving this beautiful cub!

y'all are golden.
sharon ryan, charleston sc
30/10/2021 06:07
Amazing work
Mike, London
30/10/2021 04:23
I think some people have the wrong idea messing with these wild animals..abusing animals who deserve to roam this earth as much as us. No more killing especially tigers elephants, rhinos. We need to save animals from extinctoon. We definitely need to stop overfishing too.
melanie white, United States
30/10/2021 02:10
God bless you for saving this beautifull animal. Thank you for your compassion

we need to do everything in our power to save them from extinction

God bless you.
zelna truter, Johannesburg South Africa
29/10/2021 23:28
Big ups to the rescuers, keep doing your best to keep all animals safe. It's part of our purpose.
Charles Johnson, Mexia, Tx
29/10/2021 20:41
Human intervention has become almost essential in order to save this majestic and beautiful animal from the clutches of poachers.A commendable job .Congratulations, rescue team.This shows that all round vigilance and cooperative efforts can go a long way towards preservation.
Mahua Bhattacharya , Kolkata , India
29/10/2021 19:52
Thank you for rescuing these beautiful creatures!. The people who continue to hunt them have no respect for nature and need the experience of walking into there own traps!!!
Simon, England
29/10/2021 19:30
I can only imagine that the ultimate destination for the tiger was where else but China. All the world's magnificent animals end up dead in China...chinos for their horns, elephants for their tusks, turtle for their short, it is china that is the largest market for illegal, poached wildllife..

And then there's the "wet mmarkets" China is the scourge of humankind.
James M Moll, United States
29/10/2021 19:25

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