On March 24th a comprehensive study of the Amur tiger’s corpse discovered earlier in the river Kievka of Lazovsky district was conducted. The study confirmed the preliminary version of the natural character of the animal's death.
The study was conducted by experts from the Amur Tiger Center, Primorskaya State Agricultural Academy with the participation of the Department of hunting supervision of Primorsky Krai.
During the examination it was determined that the tiger had been a well-fed adult male in good physical shape. The absence of any damage of the body and internal organs, the presence of unicellular algae and water in the animal’s blood and cavities let experts conclude that the tiger had drowned.
The scientists have collected a wide range of samples for the research carried out by postgraduates and the staff of the Biology and Soil Institute of FEB RAS, Lazovsky Nature Reserve and Primorskaya State Academy of Agriculture. The corpse of the tiger is transfered to the Lazovsky reserve to replenish the skeletal collection.
So it was determined that in November 2013, the tiger decided to move across the Kievka river and went on the thin ice that did not stand the weight of the animal (more than 200 kg). The thickness of the ice did not let the predator get out of the water. The strong stream of the river drew the tiger under the ice where it died.
"It is unfortunate that the male tiger, being in the prime of life, has died. Many people mistakenly believe that with the population of 500 individuals there are great prospects for a sharp increase, but it is not true. Do not forget about the destruction caused by humans and a high percentage of deaths due to natural causes of both tiger cubs and mature individuals. Autumn and spring ice is the cause of death of not only animals but also people – says Sergei Aramilev, director of the Primorsky branch of the Amur Tiger Center. - Taken samples of the tiger’s organs will help scientists to answer many questions, including the ones about diseases of the big cat. It is important to be able to use the remains of animals for the research, so we don not have to catch them for these purposes in the wild. "