Braman Motorcars: Protecting Malayan Tigers

A recognized leader in Species Survival Plan (SSP) breeding programs for Malayan tigers, three male Malayan tiger cubs, Jaya, Bunga, and Penari, were born here at Palm Beach Zoo in 2011. Fewer than 250 Malayan tigers have been estimated to be left in the wild.

In March 2015, we opened our "Tiger River" habitat, adding an extra exhibit yard to the Henry & Charlotte Kimelman Tiger Habitat.

We thank lead corporate sponsor Braman Motorcars Palm Beach & Jupiter for their multi-year commitment which helped us double the size of the original exhibit, as well as, the amount of behind-the-scenes space for tiger housing. 

Their ongoing support of the health and wellness, education, and daily operations of the three Malayan tigers that call Palm Beach Zoo home, is pivotal in helping us expand our role as Malayan tiger ambassadors.

Braman Motorcars: Making Strides for Tiger Conservation

The Malayan tiger (Panthera tigris jacksoni) inhabits the southern and central parts of the Malay Peninsula. It has been classified as Critically Endangered by IUCN; this population probably has fewer than 250 mature breeding individuals.

Behavioral Characteristics

  • Malayan tigers are solitary animals, except for associations between individuals of both sexes at the time of mating as well as the mother and her cubs.
  • They are nocturnal animals, spending most of the day sleeping or traveling across their territories.
  • These territorial animals do not tolerate the appearance of a member of the same sex within their bounds. Male tigers have territories larger than that of females, and one male may have more than one female within its area for mating purposes.
  • Like other tiger species, they are excellent swimmers and may spend a large part of its day in a shallow water body during the daytime heat.

Mating and Reproduction
While males reach sexual maturity at about five-years-old, females become sexually mature much sooner at around three-years-old. Malayan tigers may mate year round, but the females attain estrus between November and March. The Malayan tiger’s aggression during the mating sessions is a typical big cat mating behavior. Their gestation period ranges between 100 and 105 days after which a litter of three to four cubs are born.

Life Cycle
Tiger cubs are born without eyesight and in a helpless state. They are fed milk for the first two months of their life, after which they begin living on meat and also begin accompanying their mothers on hunting trips. The mortality rate for infant Malayan tiger cubs is rather high, with less than 50% of juveniles getting past two years of age.

They live for around 15-20 years in the wild.

Sounds and Communication
Malayan tigers communicate through an array of vocalizations, including chuffs, moans, growls, and roars. Scent marking is another prime method of non-visual and non-auditory communication between two tigers.

Learn More About Palm Beach Zoo's Conservation Efforts in Malaysia

Here are a few Malayan tiger fun facts:

  • Each tiger has its very own stripe pattern. Researchers who observe tigers can identify individuals by their unique stripes!
  • Other interesting tiger markings are the white spots on the backs of their ears. This may be a visual cue for tigers looking for other tigers, or it may be a way for mothers to keep their cubs in sight in the dense forest undergrowth.
  • Some cats do like water—and tigers are among them! On a hot, steamy day in the Asian forest, tigers will take to the river to cool off. In colder climates, they enjoy the snow.

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