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Tigers treated to egg-citing first date
Seven-year-old female Amur tiger Naya and male tiger Botsman got to know each other over a huge, colourful Easter egg.
Seven-year-old Naya gets to know her new companion

Love is in the air at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo after a pair of tigers took part in a rather egg-citing ‘first date’.

Seven-year-old female Amur tiger Naya and male tiger Botsman got to know each other over a huge, colourful Easter egg fashioned from papier-mâché. The egg was brushed with intriguing scents including catnip and blood, and hidden within the tigers’ enclosure.

Maya had recently moved to Whipsnade from a feline conservation centre in France. Keepers decided to create the special Easter egg hunt to help her get to know her new 28-stone male companion.

“We wanted to create an activity for Naya that would engage her natural instincts to hunt for and investigate something, in order to help her feel immediately at home here at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo,” said team leader Donovan Glyn. “Once we dreamt up the Easter egg hunt, we realised this would also be an excellent way for Naya and Botsman to get to know one another better.”

“So far, Naya and Botsman have been getting on extremely well, in fact, they are almost inseparable. We’re all thrilled that romance seems to be in the air this spring, and have high hopes for these two as part of the conservation breeding programme.”

Maya has moved to Whipsnade Zoo as part of the European Endangered Species Programme. As well as managing the EEP for Amur tigers, ZSL works for tiger conservation in the Russian Far East, through population monitoring, anti-poaching work, education outreach and wildlife health.

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Nominations for 2019 RSPCA Honours Awards now open

News Story 1
 People across the UK are being urged to nominate a standout animal champion for the 2019 RSPCA Honours Awards.

The awards recognise those who have worked tirelessly to improve animal welfare, campaigned on behalf of animals, or shown true bravery. Previous winners include comedian John Bishop, who was awarded Celebrity Animal Champion of the Year, and 11-year-old Lobby Cantwell, who raised more than £1,000 for the charity through mountain climbs and bike rides.

To submit a nomination or find out more about the awards visit the RSPCA website. Nominations will remain open until 4 pm on Friday, March 15.  

Click here for more...
News Shorts
New £1m project to investigate dairy cow lameness

Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) is leading a new £1 million research project to investigate the causes of lameness in dairy cows.

One in three dairy cows are affected by lameness every day in the UK, costing the industry an estimated £250 milion annually.

The project will take three years to complete and is due to finish by November 2021.

Professor Georgios Banos of SRUC commented: “In addition to pain and discomfort to the animal, lameness is associated with decreased milk production and inflated farm costs.

“Among cows raised in the same environment, some become lame while others do not. Understanding the reasons behind this will help us develop targeted preventive practices contributing to enhanced animal welfare and farm profitability.”