HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Five tigers from a failed sanctuary just made the Bay Area home. They were transported from a facility in Colorado, after it shut down, to the Big Cat Rescue in northwest Hillsborough County.
News Channel 8 was there as the tigers were loaded off a truck and taken to sprawling pens on Thursday.
One of them, 15-year-old Charaka, was eager to get out of his cage after a 30-hour drive to Florida.
“It’s a huge task,” said master keeper Regina Rinaldi. “Coordinating tiger transport over state lines [is huge].”
At Big Cat Rescue, the tigers will have acres to roam and receive top-notch medical care from the accredited facility.
More than 85 tigers, lions, bobcats and other animals live on the land.
Staffers are eager to take care of their new arrivals.
“They’ll live the rest of their lives here,” Rinaldi said. “With me as their moms. And countless other keepers.”