Posted: Aug 31, 2010 3:06 PM by Elaine Sheridan
Updated: Aug 31, 2010 3:15 PM
Denver Zoo's four endangered, Amur tiger cubs took a breath of fresh air Monday as they explored their outdoor habitat for the first time.
The cubs - females Zaria and Akasha and males Nikolai and Thimbu - were each given a clean bill of health in their last exams and are ready to meet the public.
The quadruplet cubs, born May 31, are the first of their species to be born at Denver Zoo since 2003.
Just in time for Labor Day, visitors can see the foursome now at the Feline II Building. The best time to see them will be between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Amur tigers are classified as critically endangered, with an estimated population of less than 400 individuals remaining in the wild. These animals were once called Siberian tigers because they were found throughout Siberia. They are now almost completely confined to the Far East portion of Asia along the Amur River and because of this they are now commonly called Amur tigers.
Amur tigers are the largest member of the cat family. They can grow to nearly four-feet-tall and more than seven-feet-long. Koshka is smaller than Waldemere, weighing in at more than 280 pounds during her wellness exam, while Waldemere weighs an estimated 360 pounds. Amur tigers also have longer hair and more white on their coats than other tigers.