I was a zookeeper. Then one day it happened. There was a small wooden box with air holes on the top in front of the door. The box was stamped “Dangerous”. I was scared to open it, so I picked it up and put it in my office. I got help from another zookeeper, Jake. He got a big net in case it would run away from us. I slowly opened the box. Then Jake captured it with the net. It was the poisonous tiger, the rarest animal in the world. We put it in a cage and padlocked the door.
The poisonous tiger’s habitat is a cave that is in the Piedmont forest. It is near water. Jake was amazed when I said, “It starts life as a colorful egg.” All the eggs hatch on October 7, which happens to be my birthday. The kittens are 2 inches long when they are born. Adults grow 8 inches long. At the zoo poisonous tigers usually live 105 years.
Poisonous tigers have a good sense of smell to help them catch prey. When it gets scared, its tails and claws squirt poison. This helps it defend itself from predators. The kittens camouflage from predators like a chameleon. These defenses are the reason why they live for 105 years.
In captivity I control the poisonous tiger’s diet. Our vet has helped develop a healthy diet for it. It is an omnivore. As a kitten it eats sunflowers, roses, and honeysuckle. As an adult it eats wheat and meat. Its favorites are steak, roast beef, and bacon. Even in captivity we have to keep it away from owls, eagles, and rattlesnakes. They like to eat kittens.
Jake and I had an exciting day when we discovered the wooden box. Now our zoo has the rarest animal in the world. We plan to have a lot of visitors come and see the poisonous tiger.
~ Written by AM