Tigon debuts in E China wildlife park

Updated: 2012-02-29 14:20


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Tigon debuts in E China wildlife park 

A tigon cub in Yancheng Safari Park of Changzhou city, Jiangsu province, Feb 28, 2012. [Photo/Chinanews.com]


NANJING - A newborn tigon was thrust into the spotlight in a wildlife park in eastern Jiangsu province Tuesday.

A pair of twin tigons and a lion cub, the offspring of a male tiger and a female lion, were born in Yancheng Safari Park of Changzhou city on December 26, 2011. But the female tigon cub died soon after its birth, said a park official.

Tigon debuts in E China wildlife park

A newborn tigon cub is held by a feeder in wildlife park in Nanjing, East China's Jiangsu province, Feb 28. [Photo/Xinhua]

"The two-month-old male tigon cub is very healthy and the wildlife park is considering providing strictly nutritious foods and a 24-hour nursery for it," said Xu Tianci, manager of the park.

Tigons have features of both tigers and lions, and their head usually resembles the mother, while their body resembles the father.

The rare tigons have a low survival rate, close to 1 in 500,000. The tigon is much rarer than the liger, a hybrid of a male lion and a tigress, said Tian Xiuhua, director of China Wildlife Conservation Association.

Tian said that the survival rate of tigons is much lower because it's more dangerous for a lioness to give birth than it is for a tigress, and the cubs have gene defects.

In China, tigons can also be seen in Haikou, Hainan province, Shenzhen, Guangdong province, and Xiamen, Fujian province.