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Jaya, Point Defiance Zoo tiger, dies

Jaya walks out with her cubs Kirana, Dari, and Indah at the Sumatran tiger enclosure at the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium on Dec. 4, 2014, the triplets’ first day in the public eye. Jaya died of a bacterial infection, the Tacoma zoo announced Thursday.
Jaya walks out with her cubs Kirana, Dari, and Indah at the Sumatran tiger enclosure at the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium on Dec. 4, 2014, the triplets’ first day in the public eye. Jaya died of a bacterial infection, the Tacoma zoo announced Thursday. Staff file, 2014

The Sumatran tiger Jaya, a 10-year resident of the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, died Thursday of an aggressive bacterial infection, the Tacoma zoo announced.

She was 13.

“Jaya’s liver and gastrointestinal tract weren’t functioning correctly and she was battling an aggressive bacterial infection,” head veterinarian Karen Wolf said in a news release. “We did everything we could to treat her, but it wasn’t enough and her bodily functions all began to fail.”

The infection inflamed Jaya’s liver and gastrointestinal tract, which prompted zoo veterinarians to sedate her last week to feed and medicate her. The zoo had moved its hospital operation to the Asian Forest Sanctuary to monitor Jaya around the clock.

The mother of four litters was one of six Sumatran tigers at the zoo and one of 70 in North America, according to the zoo. About 300 of the endangered big cats remain in the wild on the Indonesian island of Sumatra.

Kenny Ocker: 253-597-8627, @KennyOcker

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