TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) – The Topeka Zoo has received its first tiger, Thomas from Kansas City, since it cleared out the habitat in early December.
The Topeka Zoo announced on Thursday, Jan. 26, that Thomas – the first Sumatran Tiger of a new pair – has just arrived at the zoo from Kansas City. As part of a Species Survival Plan breeding recommendation, through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the Topeka Zoo moved all of its critically-endangered tigers to other locations.
The Zoo noted that its tiger habitat has been empty since early December as all five tigers were moved to other locations. Because Thomas is the first to arrive, it said he will complete his quarantine in the tiger habitat. This means – weather allowing – guests could have the chance to see him soon.
“We are thrilled to welcome Thomas to the Topeka Zoo family,” said Shanna Simpson, animal curator. “He is adjusting to his new home here perfectly. Our focus for the next week is to begin the relationship-building process between our animal care staff and Thomas. We will be spending time with him, feeding him, beginning training, and helping him get used to his new home. We are not sure when he will be viewable for the public but we will make sure to update everyone on how he is doing.”
The Zoo indicated that a female is expected to join Thomas in Topeka in February in hopes to establish another successful breeding pair.
I am broadly interested in how human activities influence the ability of wildlife to persist in the modified environments that we create.
Specifically, my research investigates how the configuration and composition of landscapes influence the movement and population dynamics of forest birds. Both natural and human-derived fragmenting of habitat can influence where birds settle, how they access the resources they need to survive and reproduce, and these factors in turn affect population demographics. Most recently, I have been studying the ability of individuals to move through and utilize forested areas which have been modified through timber harvest as they seek out resources for the breeding and postfledging phases. As well I am working in collaboration with Parks Canada scientists to examine in the influence of high density moose populations on forest bird communities in Gros Morne National Park. Many of my projects are conducted in collaboration or consultation with representatives of industry and government agencies, seeking to improve the management and sustainability of natural resource extraction.