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Say good-bye! Tiger brothers leave Jacksonville Zoo Wednesday

It's your last chance to say good-bye to the two Jacksonville-born Sumatran tigers Rocky and Jaggar.

It's your last chance to say good-bye to some big cats! Jacksonville Zoo's two tiger brothers are leaving Florida this week.

Wednesday is your last day to see them off. The Sumatran tiger brothers, Rocky and Jaggar, are heading to the Greensboro Science Center in North Carolina. 

Staff at the zoo say it's been interesting for the community to see the tiger cubs grow up. They're only the second and third Sumatran tigers to be born at the zoo. The first was their half-sister, who is still at the zoo. 

Dan Maloney, the Deputy Zoo Director for Animal Care and Conservation at Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens, says the move is for a couple of reasons.

For one, it lets them stay together and coexist. They're brothers, have been together since birth and get along right now, but Maloney says that might’ve changed with time because there are female tigers at the zoo.

Maloney says this move will also help with breeding. The Jacksonville zoo will be able to bring other tigers in for their breeding program with a different bloodline. Plus, these two can grow together for a little longer, until it's their turn to father cubs.

"In this case, it's a win-win," Maloney said. "These guys get a chance to go and live with each other. They're going to a place where right now there are no female tigers and we think that's going to be a really good thing for them, and then it also makes room for other tigers to come this way."

Rocky and Jaggar were born at Jacksonville Zoo in 2017. 

The Land of the Tiger exhibit will still feature three other tigers. Those three are Malayan tigers, whereas Rocky and Jaggar are the only two Sumatran tigers.

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