The mother and the cubs are all in good health
After the birth of the first white tiger cub in the Chittagong Zoo on July 19, the second was born in the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Safari Park in Gazipur.
The mother tiger gave birth to three cubs on August 8. Among them, one was a white, or albino, tiger cub. This is the first time any albino tiger cub was born inside a safari park.
The same tigress gave birth to three other cubs in 2017. Overall, the total number of tigers in the safari park currently stands at 12. There are four male and eight female cubs among them.
Wildlife Inspector of the safari park Anisur Rahman confirmed the incident. He also said that considering the safety of the cubs, the park authorities announced the birth a month after they were born.
The mother and the cubs are all in good health, Anisur said. The cubs are regularly breastfeeding, and the mother is being given extra food to keep her healthy and well.
The wildlife inspector said the birth of an albino is nothing unnatural, as albinism is sometimes passed from parent to offspring.
The curator of the tigress Nurunnabi said: "She becomes scared whenever she sees unknown people. Keeping the cubs' safety in mind, we will keep them hidden from the public eye for a year longer. They will be breastfed for the initial six months; after that, they will be given meat."
According to zoologists and wildlife experts, albinism is the congenital absence of any pigmentation or colouration in a person, animal or plant, resulting in white hair and pink eyes in mammals.
Albinism occurs in almost all animal species which have the pigment called melanin – which gives skin its colour – in their bodies. These include reptiles, amphibians, molluscs, birds, and mammals.
Albinism is passed genetically from parent to offspring. Each cell contains numerous pairs of genes– one from each parent. These transmit traits through generations, with an albino offspring resulting from a specific combination of genes.