Friday 9 December 2016

The Lynx Effect? Tigers lured by unwanted Christmas scents

Published 25/12/2015 | 09:56

Amur tiger Bella pushes a leftover Christmas tree as staff at Blair Drummond Safari Park near Stirling use scents and sprays to keep the tigers' keen sense of smell stimulated
Amur tiger Bella pushes a leftover Christmas tree as staff at Blair Drummond Safari Park near Stirling use scents and sprays to keep the tigers' keen sense of smell stimulated

Tigers at a safari park are hunting unwanted Christmas presents to keep them entertained over the holidays.

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The animals are particularly keen on aftershave or perfume sets that people may have been given as presents but will never use, and keepers said they like them "the smellier the better".

Staff at Blair Drummond Safari Park near Stirling use scents and sprays to keep the tigers' keen sense of smell stimulated.

They spray aftershave and perfume over toys and treats in the enclosure to help male Genghis and female Bella hunt them down.

The two Amur tigers, aged 19 and 13, recently moved to a new enclosure named Tiger Ridge, and new smells will help them explore the rock formation, cave and waterfall at the centre of their new home.

The safari park is closed over winter but staff are still working every day to feed, clean and keep the animals busy.

Keeper Sam Clark said: "We all get gift sets from grannies and aunties that we no doubt appreciate but probably don't ever use.

"Rather than clogging up bathrooms, any aftershaves or perfumes can be handed in to the park and put to good use keeping the tigers entertained.

"All tigers have a very sensitive sense of smell and new scents keep them stimulated and are good for enrichment.

"Genghis and Bella aren't into any particular brands, they're really not fussy, in fact it seems the smellier the better for them."

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