The Jacksonville Zoo, celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, recently opened its much-anticipated “Land of the Tiger” exhibit. Five tigers – two Sumatran and three Malayan – are the main attraction. Other Asian animals sharing the 2.5 acres include pigs, otters, and hornbills. Asian plants complete the immersion experience.
One of the most notable aspects of the exhibit is a fenced-in walkway, made to look like a strangler fig, which gives the tigers an opportunity to pass over the pedestrian courtyard to move to a different environment. (Yes, this walkway is for tigers – not people!)
At the time of my visit, three Malayan tigers were out – one walking along the back fence, the others sunning by the pond. I read not to expect to see both species roaming around at the same time. The explanation – “they just don’t play well together”.
“Land of the Tiger” is the most significant addition to the zoo since Range of the Jaguar opened in 2004 and is an experience not to be missed! For more information, visit the Jacksonville Zoo website.