Born Free Foundation - Keep Wildlife in the Wild

Roque is a magnificent tiger who lives at Born Free’s tiger sanctuary in Bannerghatta, India. Majestic and strong, Roque (‘Rocky’) lives in a large forest enclosure, surrounded by the sights and sounds of wild India. He clambers over boulders, rolls in sandy soil, keeps cool in his deep pool and enjoys real ‘tiger habitat’.

Roque’s story

Roque before rescue

Born on 17th May 1998, Roque was only a few days old when he was taken from his mother and put on sale in a Spanish pet-shop. Terrified and alone, the bewildered cub paced his small glass tank, crying.

Born Free is very worried about the exotic pet trade, because wild animals belong in the wild and never make good pets. It is very difficult to properly care for a wild animal and it could become dangerous.

Many tiger cubs end up alone in tiny cages, are sold on to circuses or zoos, or worse.
Born Free was determined to expose the terrible exotic pet-trade and with the Sunday Mirror newspaper organised an undercover operation.

Roque was rescued and brought to a UK-based big cat sanctuary, home to several Born Free big cats. Here he quickly grew, and although his keepers tried to teach him to ‘play gently’, some of his games left them with scratches and scars. It is horrifying to think what might have happened to this gorgeous young tiger and the injuries he might have caused if Born Free hadn’t rescued him.

Roque in his sanctuary

In April 2002 Born Free moved Roque to his new home in India. Here he has matured and become much more like a wild tiger - aloof and imposing. He enjoys patrolling his territory, particularly investigating the large patch of forest and the insects, lizards and small mammals that live in the undergrowth.

His favourite place is beneath a large bush high up on a rocky bank beside his pool, and from here he gets a great view of the surrounding countryside.

Sadly tigers face many threats and the wild tiger is in crisis. In the last 100 years 95% have been wiped out and today as few as 3,000 remain. Poaching is a big problem and their forest home is being cut down.

Working with local communities and other wildlife organisations Born Free wants to help ensure there are 10,000 wild tigers in 10 years’ time.

Born Free Foundation
Broadlands Business Campus, Langhurstwood Road
, Horsham, RH12 4QP, UK - Charity Reg. No. 1070906

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