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Soyono, rare Sumatran tiger euthanized at National Zoo

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A rare Sumatran tiger that gave birth to seven cubs during her lifespan was humanely euthanized at the National Zoo Monday morning. Soyono, affectionately known as Soy, was elderly and zoo veterinarians say her health had been in decline for several weeks.

Soyono, rare Sumatran tiger mother

Soyono, rare Sumatran tiger mother
Photo Credit: Jon McRay, Smithsonian’s National Zoo

Soy was born at the National zoo in 1993. Her mother was caught in the wild, making Soy’s genes highly valuable for research and breeding. With her mate Rokan, Soy went on to birth three litters, producing seven cubs. Those cubs were transported to zoos around the world to participate in highly important international breeding programs. One of her cubs, Guntur, was born in 2006. He was sent to Zoorasia in Yokohama Japan earlier this year.

Sumatran tigers are critically endangered, meaning there are only about 700 left in the world. The average lifespan of a Sumatran tiger is 15 years. Soy was 19.
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The Smithsonian National Zoo has two Sumatran tigers at the Great Cats exhibit. A young female tiger, Dani, and a male tiger, Kavi.

SOYONO’S LEGACY

• Berani, male
San Antonio Zoo, San Antonio TX

• Jalan, male
Landry’s Downtown Aquarium, Denver, CO

• Marah, male
Landry’s Downtown Aquarium, Denver, CO

• Besar, male
Landry’s Downtown Aquarium, Denver, CO

• Maharani, female
Cameron Park Zoo, Waco TX
Maharani has given birth to two litters of cubs.

• Melati, female
Dallas Zoo, Dallas TX

• Guntur, male
Zoorasia, Yokohama, Japan

 

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