The Cubs Have Names!

The Virginia Zoo is excited to at last release the name of its infamous tiger cubs: Stubbley and Osceola. The naming rights of the cubs were bid on at the Zoo To Do, the Zoo’s charity gala held in May.

Chuck Stencel and his wife, who reside in Chicago, Ill., won the naming rights of Tiger 000 for $900. They decided the cub would be named Osceola after their grandson who was born last month in Suffolk, Va. They also decided to contribute annually to the care of Osceola.

Emery Wyatt, Suffolk resident and now Zoo member and Zoo Crew volunteer, won the naming rights, along with his wife, of Tiger 001 for $500. The Wyatt’s chose Stubbley as a tribute to the first dog they owned together. The money raised from the auction benefits the Zoo’s “Defining Moments” Capital Campaign to renovate the new World of Reptiles exhibit building slated to open in Summer 2018.

The critically endangered Malayan tiger cubs have been the center of attention since their birth in January. After their mom Api showed a lack of maternal care, it was determined that the cubs needed to be moved to the Zoo’s Animal Wellness Campus for hand rearing by the Zoo’s Veterinary and Animal Care Staff. Thousands of Zoo visitors watched the tiger cub feedings and attended the daily public viewings through mid-May when the boys started prepping for their move onto exhibit.

Virginia Zoo staff and volunteers collected $3,000 in donations during that time which will contribute to tiger conservation. In July, the American Association of Zoo Keepers (AAZK) Tidewater Chapter raised $150 through a cookie fundraiser for International Tiger Day. The local AAZK chapter and Virginia Zoo Conservation Fund decided to match that amount and presented the Tiger SSP Conservation Campaign with a check for $600. In addition, the Zoo annually contributes $5,000 to the World Wild Fund for Tiger Conservation, totaling more than $8,500 for tiger conservation in 2016.

Stubbley and Osceola have been on exhibit in Asia- Trail of the Tiger since mid-June. They are usually on exhibit midday and can be seen splashing around in the pool and wrestling with each from Noon until 5 pm.