|I had the opportunity to participate
in a historic zoological event.
In July, 2006, T.I.G.E.R.S
Under strict specifications set forth by the U.S. federal government, I designed and built all of the transport cages the animal would be traveling in. This became a lengthy and in depth process. These photos represent just a brief glimpse of the work and effort put forth. All told, the seven cages took more than two and a half months to produce and required:
1,500 lineal feet of steel
Each cage was equiped with a steel watering bowl, dual doors with a removable shutter system, individual fans and a very large kitty litter tray.
The collective weight (without the tigers) was nearly 2 tons.
Not only did I build these super-duty transport cages,
I traveled in the cargo plane with
Myrtle Beach, SC
It was nearly three days before we saw a hotel room.
Now you may be wondering why we would take tigers to Thailand.
First, most tigers in the wild are being killed because of their perceived value as traditional Asian medicine and as an aphrodisiac. China consumes the vast majority of these tigers. Thailand, being a close neighbor of China, happens to be the hub of illegal commerce between the Asian countries supplying the dead tigers and the Chinese who are buying their body parts. It is our hope that by educating the public in these places they will understand the importance of the tiger and to refrain from taking part in tiger trade. Currently their are thought to be less than 100 tigers in Thailand. This is an optimistic estimate.
The second reason for taking tigers is the exchange of bloodlines. Unfortunately it appears that the salvation of the tiger is heavily reliant upon captive breeding. This requires a responsible plan for breeding. While we do want to see tigers proliferate and keep a stable population, this is not a puppy mill, and we do not want indiscriminant breeding. We closely monitor and control who breeds with whom in order to ensure a sufficiently deep gene pool.
The full steel frame of the first cage.