(WJET/WFXP/YourErie.com) — The Erie Zoo has announced the death of one of its Amur tigers, Tikva.
Tikva, the female Amur tiger at the Erie Zoo, was humanely euthanized late Tuesday after experiencing health issues, according to the zoo. Tikva was 16.5 years old.
Tikva began experiencing symptoms a month ago. Early symptoms included loss of appetite and mobility issues. The zoo’s vet team created a treatment plan and was closely observing her when her condition severely worsened this week.
The Amur tiger is the largest member of the cat family and is found in the Russian Far East and on the Russia-China border along the Amur River, in northeast China and North Korea. Amur tigers are critically endangered due to being hunted for their fur and body parts. They are also threatened by habitat loss caused by human encroachment and the loss of an adequate prey base due to competition with humans.
The zoo reports a necropsy was conducted Tuesday evening, and the zoo is awaiting the return of lab results to help determine the cause of her symptoms.
The zoo has one remaining Amur tiger, Nuri. She arrived at the zoo in May.
The zoo noted Nuri and Tikva never shared the same space and they will be evaluating the next steps in the coming months.
The life span of tigers in the wild is typically 10 to 15 years. In human care, they can live up to 20 years.