T.I.G.E.R.S. - Tiggers don’t jump…they bounce!

Friday, July 18, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good day once again from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach!  If you you live here or are here visiting, you may not know there is an interactive tour with wild animals just a few miles from here. 

Please enjoy reading the contribution by our guest blogger, Dan:

Perhaps no cartoon character in history is more loveable than Winnie the Pooh’s pal Tigger. Tigger…that’s T-I- Double G-RRRR, was a tiger who talked with a lisp and walked with a bounce and had an overly-exaggerated opinion of his own importance. He meant well but usually got himself - and his friends in deeper trouble than he was trying to help them out of.

The original character of Tigger was based on a stuffed animal, as were all of the characters in A. A. Milne’s 1926 book Winnie the Pooh. The stuffed animals belonged to Milnes’ son Christopher Robin Milne who was the inspiration for the character; Christopher Robin, featured in the book. The main character Winnie the Pooh was inspired by young Christopher’s teddy bear whom he named after a real black bear he would visit at the London Zoo. His eclectic group of friends included a grumpy old rabbit name Rabbbit, a kindhearted piglet named Piglet, a mother kangaroo and her baby named Kanga and Roo and a donkey who worried about everything named Eeyore.  

But of all of Pooh Bear’s friends, Tigger has been the most beloved. He’s loveable, happy and enthusiastic and although he often bites off more than he can chew, he always has the best intentions of his friends at heart.

In real life, tigers are coveted rather than beloved in the illegal tiger poaching trade where their incredible coats are a sought-after trophy used to decorate floors in wealthy households and their bones are ground up and used for a variety of ancient eastern remedies.  By Dan DeFreest

T.I.G.E.R.S. Preserve in Myrtle Beach is working tirelessly to save these magnificent animals before the poachers drive them into extinction. Come visit us and experience the tiger up close. You meet a whole new eclectic group of animal friends in the process.

T.I.G.E.R.S. - Close friends of different species

Friday, July 11, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good afternoon everyone from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach!  If you read my posts, you know animals can become very close with members of another species.
 
Like most youngsters, their play can get a little wild. But five-month-old grizzly bear Bam Bam and 16-month-old chimpanzee Vali are the most unlikely friends.

For while together they resemble a pair of cuddly toys, they would normally live on different continents.

And when they grow up, Bam Bam is likely to be about nine times the size of his chimp pal. But the young males have been inseparable since being introduced at the Myrtle Beach Safari park in South Carolina, where they were born.

Visitors delight in watching them wrestling and playing tag. In the wild, Bam Bam would live in the wilds of North America, while Vali’s natural home is the jungle of central Africa.

Park owner Bhagavan Antle said staff decided to see whether the pair would hit it off when Bam Bam reached the same size as Vali – even though bears grow much faster than chimps.

‘We got them out there playing on a sunny day and they went on and on for hours,’ he said. ‘Neither of them wanted to quit. They would lie down and fall asleep at our feet, wake back up and start wrestling again.’

 Dr Antle added: ‘Bam Bam has more power, but Vali tricks him. He will throw things at Bam Bam and run around him in circles.’

When the pair aren’t together, energetic Vali likes to help out his mum, while Bam Bam prefers a slower pace of life.


Staff are not sure how long the friendship will last as Bam Bam will quickly grow into a 56st adult bear, while Vali will reach only 9st

‘He likes nothing better than a bowl of sweet potatoes and chicken mash,’ added Dr Antle.

Staff at the safari park now wonder whether the friendship can last. An adult grizzly can weigh up to 56st, while a mature male chimp tips the scales at just 9st.
Staff are not sure how long the friendship will last as Bam Bam will quickly grow into a 56st adult bear, while Vali will reach only 9st.

By Amy Oliver dailymail.co.uk/Photo by Barry Bland

Over the last decade T.I.G.E.R.S. have donated over 200 thousand dollars, as well as time, effort and expertise, to grassroots conservation programs in Asia and Africa. The money from the Wildlife tour goes directly to help save the Endangered Wildlife Species and preserve their natural habitats.  For information about T.I.G.E.R.S. visit, www.myrtlebeachsafari.com.

T.I.G.E.R.S. - The world's first ever white lion-tiger hybrids

Friday, June 27, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Welcome again and good afternoon from T.I.G.E.R.S.!  The tour and Preservation Station are in full swing!  If you're a regular reader here, you know we often talk about our amazing LIGER, a cross between a Lion and a White Tiger.  

These five-month-old liger cubs are the nephews of Hercules, pictured below, the official Guinness Book of World Records largest cat on the planet! The four male liger cubs are the first ever to be born from a white male lion and a white female tiger, making them the world's most unique big cats. 

The four brothers named Yeti, Odlin, Sampson, and Apollo are the world's first ever white lion-tiger hybrids. Their parents are the famous wildlife ambassadors, Ivory and Saraswati, at Jungle Island in Miami, FL. Ivory and Saraswati met each other at the Myrtle Beach Safari in Myrtle Beach, SC. There are only around 300 white lions and 1,200 white tigers left in the world, so the cubs' father and mother are extremely rare in their own right. Ivory is a white African lion and Saraswati is a snow white Bengal tiger.

These adorable cubs may look unassuming but they could grow to be the biggest cats in the world averaging a weight gain of one pound per day! A liger is just what it sounds like, a cross between a male lion and tigress. There are around 1,000 ligers in the world but none of them are white.

According to Dr. Antle, Yeti (pictured on far left) is the biggest and most boisterous, pushing past his smaller brothers and wanting to be the center of attention. Doc says he is sure Yeti will reach the size of his Uncle Hercules, if not larger. "I am convinced Yeti will make the Guinness Book of Records. He's so big already - has such a big, fat head and paws. All the cubs grow so quickly but Yeti is already so much bigger". Apollo is the smallest and behaves more like a house kitten, purring all the time and demanding to be stroked. Ligers tend to enjoy swimming, which is a characteristic of tigers and are sociable like lions.  

"We've had everyone from Congressman to people from all walks of life get on planes to fly in to see such an incredibly unique sight", says Doc Antle, "they have such a beautiful creamy color that I have never seen on a cat before".

*Thank you to Lucy Osborne and the UK Daily Mail Online for their help in this publication.*

T.I.G.E.R.S. Preserve and T.I.G.E.R.S. Preservation  Station were created as a wildlife education organization dedicated to promoting global conservation. With informative, educational and entertaining interactive programs, Dr. Bhagavan Antle has created a once-in-a-lifetime experience! Dr. Antle, Director of T.I.G.E.R.S., works closely with international wildlife conservation projects in North America, South America, Africa and Southeast Asia.   To make reservations over the phone, please call 843.855.2699 or click here.

T.I.G.E.R.S. Preservation Station - Read what others are saying...

Wednesday, June 25, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good afternoon from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach!  Did you know there is a FREE living tiger museum located inside Barefoot Landing in North Myrtle Beach, SC?  It offers families the opportunity to see tigers up close, through glass, absolutely free of charge.

Read what others are saying about T.I.G.E.R.S. Preservation Station:

“Wow is an understatement!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2014 via mobile

We took our 2 grown daughters(22 &23) and we all had a great time. We were amazed at how many animals we got to hold and interact with. I smiled so much in the 3 hrs we were there that my face hurt when we left. Well worth the money. We bought the pictures and got a cd with almost 500 pics of our day. Definitely something to experience with your family. - M. Chinun

 “Loved it”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2014 NEW

I saw this and had to go . We got out picture taken with a tiger cub & a baby chimp.  My kids loved seeing all of the tigers. - smjones Edgewoor,  KY

“Wonderful Experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2014 NEW

We saw the ad somewhere and decided while at Barefoot Landing to go get our pictures with a tiger. I have been obsessed with chimpanzees since I was very young, so I was thrilled to see the option to take a picture with one. I was apprehensive bc I do not agree with animals being used for entertainment but once I witnessed with operation and the animals' owners, I became more comfortable.  The trainers/owners were very knowledgeable. I plan on returning to do the tour once I can without the entire family. If you are a true animal lover then I highly recommend it. My mother went and she isnt the biggest on animals, especially touching them but one hug from the chimp youngster was all it took for her to fall in love. - T. Tyler Roanoke, VA

“Great Experience!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 8, 2014

Once in a lifetime experience. You get to interact with the animals.  Wonderful! We will definitely do the full safari next time, we only got to do the pics with the tiger and the monkey. The staff is very friendly. - Kim D. Woburn, MA

For those interested in meeting a tiger or an ape in person, we offer (for a fee)the opportunity to pose with one of the animal ambassadors for a photo. The animals spend only a couple hours per day, in the late afternoon, at T.I.G.E.R.S. Preservation Station and funding generated from our photos and gift shop sales help support various wildlife conservation projects we conduct worldwide through our Rare Species Fund. We are open from mid-March to mid-October and hours of operation can be found by visiting our website.

T.I.G.E.R.S. - Unlikely trio of friends live and swim together

Wednesday, June 18, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good afternoon from T.I.G.E.R.S.!  I hope you are having a great week and are enjoying this perfect weather!  Come and visit live tigers and have your picture taken with a tiger or tiger cub at T.I.G.E.R.S. Preserve and Preservation Station in Myrtle Beach.

A lion, a tiger and a bear - oh my! Unlikely trio of wild friends live and swim together at Myrtle Beach sanctuary

Lions, tigers and bears are the kind of apex predators that instill fear in the hearts of most humans. But at the Myrtle Beach Safari and Wildlife Preserve, one unlikely animal trio is warming visitors hearts with their friendship and unusual workout.

Nahma the white tiger, Bam Bam the lion and Maximus the grizzly bear were raised together at the South Carolina preserve and consider each other siblings.

The 1-year-olds were recently photographer swimming in the pool with their handlers, an aquatic workout all three enjoy.

'These three have been playing together all their lives, so they've forgotten their differences,' said Doc Antle who runs the preserve.

Antle coordinates wildlife conservation projects all over the world via RareSpeciesFund.org. He says allowing the animals to swim in his specially constructed pool keeps them healthy, agile and stimulated.

'It's great exercise for them and it helps keep them cool in the summer,' he said. - By Daily Mail Reporter Published: 10 June 2014

Learn more about Doc, the trainers, animals, and the tour at www.myrtlebeachsafari.com

T.I.G.E.R.S. - Support and join T.I.G.E.R.S. and the R.S.F.

Monday, June 9, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good afternoon everyone from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach! Where in Myrtle Beach can you experience a safari?  What attraction can you visit and feel the leathery hide of an elephant, the soft touch of a lynx, and hear the heart pounding sound of tigers running at 55 miles per hour?   

As I was doing some research for the blog this morning, I found this article:

Tigers are Rapidly Disappearing from the Wild
According to the latest estimates, there are only about 3,200 tigers left in the wild on the entire planet. That's a catastrophically sharp decline from the 100,000 tigers that were estimated to be in the wild in 1990. The WWF experts warn that "The big cat, which is native to southern and eastern Asia, could soon become extinct unless urgent action is taken to prevent hunting and loss of habitat."

The Campaign to Double Wild Tiger Population
Countries where tigers are still found in the wild - such as China, India and Bangladesh - have made a commitment to double their numbers by 2022 (Year of the Tiger in the Chinese calendar). But following through on that pledge will be the hard part, and conservation groups are trying to put pressure on them to force them to keep their word.

We Could Lose a Top Predator
If tigers disappear (at least from the wild), we not only lose a top predator that is essential to many ecosystems, but it also means that enough habitat has been destroyed to also endanger many other species. Tiger population health is an indicator of ecosystem health in many Asian countries. by Michael Graham Richard (@Michael_GR)

Take the tour of T.I.G.E.R.S. preserve where you will connect with wildlife in a very intimate way and involve yourself personally in the lives of these amazing animals. Then walk away into the world with a desire to save these creatures and help preserve their environments.

Please visit, support and join T.I.G.E.R.S. and the R.S.F in their worldwide education and conservation efforts.  For more info, go to myrtlebeachsafari.com and rarespeciesfund.org.

T.I.G.E.R.S. - experiences that can be life changing

Friday, May 30, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good day from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach! 

At our Preservation Stations, the wildlife ambassadors; the great apes, big cats, elephant and a stunning group of other highly interactive animal ambassadors, offer our guests a collection of experiences that can be life changing. While at the preserves, the participants senses are awakened to a whole new world; feeling the leathery hide of our elephant, the soft touch of a lynx, the sweet smell of a binturong and the heart pounding sound of tigers running at 55 miles per hour. Our visitors see animals they know and love displaying their spectacular natural talents and have encounters with new ones they never even knew existed. During these encounters our guests connect with wildlife in a very intimate way which personally involves them in the lives of these amazing animals. They then walk away into the world with a desire to save these creatures and help preserve their environments.

Read what others said recently:

“Loved this experience so much!”
I haven't been on the tour (yet), but we did the Barefoot Landing part of the experience. We got to hold a chimpanzee, a 3 month old Golden Tabby tiger, and a 1 month old Bengal. They took a lot of pictures that we could choose from. I loved that we got to go "nose to nose" with the Bengal. He was adorable. The staff is incredible, so passionate about their jobs and the animals. They had just as much to do with the experience being wonderful as the animals did! I will be going to the sanctuary to take the 3-hour tour in a couple of months when I visit again. The Barefoot Landing experience was worth every single penny. - Stina143 New Jersey Visited May 25, 2014


"Wonderful Experience"
Highly recommended for anyone that loves animals. I told my special needs daughter and she loved it. You are able to get up close and personal with some of the rarest animals in the world. It's a once in lifetime opportunity. - Julie C. Brooklyn, NC  Visited May 16, 2014


“no lions or bears only tigers lol”
if you like watching tigers play & might want a picture with a baby this is the place to go & watch them. the tigers were very active when we went and saw them. spent about 1/2 hour just enjoying the big cats & the little ones playing. - Wm. Haws Center Valley, PA  Visited May 16, 2014


"Unbelievable!"
This is an experience that is well worth every penny paid. You are up close and personal with some of the rarest animals in the world for hours! The staff are truly amazing and dedicate their lives to caring for and promoting the preservation of the animals. My favorite part of the whole experience was meeting a little two year old chimp who stole my heart! I would recommend this to anyone who asked me about it and plan on going back next year. - Abby F.  Visited May 13, 2014

“AMAZING!”
This is something you must try and do at least once in your lifetime! My daughter has talked about the experience daily since we visited. Watching her eyes light up in excitement was worth every penny. The animal trainers truly make everyone feel welcome. We cannot wait to go back , Thanks for all you do!  - April b Morristown, TN  Visited May 12, 2014

For more information, please visit www.myrtlebeachsafari.com

T.I.G.E.R.S. - "We can bring endangered species back"

Friday, May 16, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Hello and good afternoon from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach!  The Tour is a guided walk through a fifty acre preserve  just 17 miles South of Barefoot Landing, where you'll meet tigers, wolves, leopards, chimpanzees, orangutans, and other endangered species, many of them up-close and un-caged! During the tour professional photographers shoot studio quality photographs and video of the tour and the T.I.G.E.R.S. Preserve experience. This gives you the opportunity to take home a set of portraits and phenomenal videos that are incomparable to any other photo opportunity.  

Enjoy this recent article:  

MEDFORD, Ore. — Oregon's famous wandering gray wolf, dubbed OR-7, may have found the mate he has trekked thousands of miles looking for, wildlife authorities said Monday. It's likely the pair spawned pups, and if confirmed, the rare predators would be the first breeding pair of wolves in the Oregon's Cascade Range since the early 1900s.

Officials said cameras in the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest in the southern Cascades captured several images of what appears to be a female wolf in the same area where OR-7's GPS collar shows he has been living.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologist John Stephenson said it is not proof, but it is likely the two wolves mated over the winter and are rearing pups that would have been born in April. Biologists won't start looking for a den until June, to avoid endangering the pups.

"It's amazing that he appears to have found a mate," Stephenson said. "I didn't think it would happen. It makes me more impressed with the ability of wolves to survive and find one another."

Young wolves typically leave their pack and strike out for a new territory, hoping to find a mate and start a new pack.

OR-7 has been looking for a mate since leaving the Imnaha pack in northeastern Oregon in September 2011. His travels have taken him thousands of miles as he crossed highways, deserts and ranches in Oregon, moved down the spine of the Cascade Range deep into Northern California and then back to Oregon, all without getting shot, having an accident or starving.

Federal Endangered Species Act protections for wolves have been lifted in eastern Oregon, where the bulk of them reside, but they remain in force in the Cascades. Protections for the animals have also ended in the last several years in the Northern Rockies and western Great Lakes.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed ending the listing across most of the rest of the country as populations have rebounded. A final decision is expected later this year.

If a wolf was going to start a pack in a new part of Oregon, ranchers should be glad it is OR-7, who has no history of preying on livestock, said Bill Hoyt, past president of the Oregon Cattlemen's Association. The group supports Oregon's wolf recovery plan and is looking forward to the day the predator's numbers and range expand enough for their protections to be removed.

Steve Pedery, conservation director of Oregon Wild, said the news was "spectacular." The conservation group won a court ruling barring the state from killing two members of OR-7's home pack for preying on livestock and later won a settlement strictly limiting when wolves can be killed.

"It goes to show that when we act on America's best impulses for the environment, amazing things can happen. We can bring endangered species back," he said.

Stephenson expected the battery on OR-7's GPS collar to die soon, so the biologist set up trail cameras based on the wolf's most recent whereabouts. The GPS locations also showed OR-7 was staying within a smaller area, common behavior when wolves have pups to feed.

When he checked the cameras last week, Stephenson said one had recorded a black wolf he had not seen before. An hour later, OR-7 was photographed on the same camera. The black wolf was confirmed to be female because she squatted to urinate.

Officials had planned to let OR-7's collar die, but now that he appears to have found a mate, he will be fitted with a new one this summer to monitor the pack.

Stephenson said officials had no idea where the female came from.
By JEFF BARNARD  The Associated PressMay 12, 2014

Go online and visit www.myrtlebeachsafari.com for more information about the Rare Species Fund, the tour and Tigers Preserve.  Come to see the White Tigers, a liger and other amazing animals in Myrtle Beach at one of the most exciting animal adventures ever.  All proceeds from the tour go to The Rare Species Fund and The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species.

T.I.G.E.R.S. - Animals you see on TV and movies

Friday, May 9, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good Friday afternoon from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach, SC!  The staff and animals, dedicated to ongoing breeding and international conservation projects are currently in full swing at the 50 acre Preserve and Preservation Station.

T.I.G.E.R.S. was founded by Dr. Bhagavan Antle. He is one of the World’s foremost trainers of big cats and other exotic animals. Doc Antle’s animal actors have appeared in over 500 films, television shows, commercials and advertisements worldwide.

Mary Quinn O'Connor, Reporter program at Fox News describes these animal actors:

If you’ve ever wondered where the animals you see on TV and movies live when they're not on set, or even how they learn to “act”, look no further than Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. This tourist destination, known mainly for its sunny weather and crowded beaches, is also home to Tigers Preservation Station and Safari (T.I.G.E.R.S) a safari for celebrity animals.
 
“Watching the film and television process happen gave me an idea that recreating that for our guests gave them the chance to see animals up close and in action doing things like their favorite television moments,” said T.I.G.E.R.S. Founder and safari director Dr. Bhagavan Antle.
 
“Doc” created a safari for visitors from around the world to come and see these highly trained animals in their natural habitat. You may recognize these animals from films such as "Ace Ventura", "Doctor Doolittle", "Jungle Book", and "Mighty Joe Young".


 
“We act as agents for the animals,” said Antle. “Producers from movie and television call us up and say ‘We need a tiger who will just go up and lay down with an actress,’" said Antle.
 
The trainers at T.I.G.E.R.S make that request a reality. Through hundreds of hours of training a week, these animals become accustomed to working with humans.
 
“That gives the animals an edge in working the movie and television business because they are already so acclimated to the human lifestyle,” said Antle.
 
Thirty years ago, Antle created this unique safari experience where guests could come and interact (sit with them, play with them, and feed them) with these wild, endangered, and even famous animals like nowhere else in the world.


 
“It’s not going to the zoo, it something all together different,” said one safari guest.

The animals at this safari have already starred in over 500 movie and television shows over the past 30 years, and some of these animals still have a long career ahead of them-- like Bubbles the Elephant. Bubbles has starred in many movies, but is most famous for her role in Ace Ventura.
 
“She’s what I call the world’s biggest movie star,” said Antle. “There has been another elephant in a movie but its not as tall or heavy as Bubbles.”
 
By visiting Bubbles or some of your other favorite animal-stars, you are contributing to the Rare Species Fund which was established to provide funding to critical international wildlife conservation programs.
 
“The animal actors and the animals that are here meeting the guests will raise money for grassroots conservation programs that give people the chance to save wildlife throughout the world,” said Antle.

Ian Guerin gave a plug this week in the article called, "Ten reasons to stay at Barefoot Resort in North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina":

The T.I.G.E.R.S. (short for The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species) Preservation Station gets visitors up close and personal with the world's rarest tiger breeds, apes and chimpanzees. For the more daring, tickets are also available for T.I.G.E.R.S. outdoor preserve, located 17 miles south of Barefoot.

That is the home to Hercules, a 900-pound Liger (lion-tiger hybrid) recognized in the 2014 Guinness Book of World Records as the world's largest cat.

Go online and visit www.myrtlebeachsafari.com for more information about the Rare Species Fund, the tour and Tigers Preserve.  Come to see the White Tigers, a liger and other amazing animals in Myrtle Beach at one of the most exciting animal adventures ever.  All proceeds from the tour go to The Rare Species Fund and The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species.

T.I.G.E.R.S. - experience a safari in Myrtle Beach

Thursday, April 24, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good afternoon from T.I.G.E.R.S. where the 2014 season is under way!  Where in Myrtle Beach can you experience a safari?  What attraction can you visit and feel the leathery hide of an elephant, the soft touch of a lynx, and hear the heart pounding sound of tigers running at 55 miles per hour?   

T.I.G.E.R.S leads the public to thrilling encounters that are both heart pounding and heart warming with the real exotic creatures who rule there.

If you have a fascination for tigers, read on...

The Golden Tabby tiger is one of the world's rarest big cats. This type of tiger became extinct in the wild in 1932 when the last two were shot in Mysore Padesh, India. From work done by us at the Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species and our breeding partner Dr. Jossip Marcan we have brought back from the very edge of extinction the Golden Tabby Tiger. The Golden Tabby tiger is a white tiger with red stripes and a red saddle pattern. It has none of the black coloration of a standard Bengal tiger of a Royal White Bengal tiger. We are very proud to say that since the first birth in 1987 that their are now more than 30 Golden Tabby tigers in existence today.

Tigers are incredible growing machines. They weigh around half a pound at birth and can fit in the palm of your hand. As they begin to grow, they gain a half a pound a day, on average, for the first couple of years of their life. This means that a 1-year-old cub weighs close to 300 pounds. The small birth size of tiger babies is a great benefit for the mother tiger. Tiny babies allow mother tigers to stay in top physical condition so they can track, hunt, and kill prey as large as young elephants, small rhinos, and even buffalo a day or so before giving birth, and just a few days afterwards.

Over the last decade T.I.G.E.R.S. have donated over 200 thousand dollars, as well as time, effort and expertise, to grassroots conservation programs in Asia and Africa. The money from the Wildlife tour goes directly to help save the Endangered Wildlife Species and preserve their natural habitats.  For information about T.I.G.E.R.S. visit, www.myrtlebeachsafari.com.

T.I.G.E.R.S. - One of the best Myrtle Beach attractions

Friday, April 11, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good afternoon from T.I.G.E.R.S.!  I hope you are having a great Friday and will have a safe weekend.

Dr. Bhagavan Antle of T.I.G.E.R.S. Preserve in Myrtle Beach strives to save Cheetahs.  Dr. Antle and eight exotic animal trainers from T.I.G.E.R.S along with their veterinarian Dr. Sherri Duncan, decided to go and teach the staff of Savannah Cheetah Foundation  how to train cheetahs to our lure system and make a video and photo documentary of this amazing event. Some of the T.I.G.E.R.S. staff have over twenty years experience working as professional videographers and photographers and are continually working with endangered wildlife species.  It is our hope that the sight of a beautiful cheetah pelting across the grass up close and personal both live and on DVD would help inspire their visitors and those who view the video and pictures, towards a more ecologically friendly way of life.

The Foundation was created as a breeding facility for cheetahs, and also as a place for people of all kinds to come and learn about the plight of cheetahs in the wild. Most of the visitors to the preserve are local students, many of whom have been raised with the idea that cheetahs are nuisance animals that need to be eradicated in order to protect livestock. It is to these children of Africa that the message of conservation is most essential.

We came to film and train cheetahs in a place with no name that is a mere ninety minutes drive from the airport, but is as far removed from anything resembling a city as somewhere can be.

Visit one of the best Myrtle Beach attractions, T.I.G.E.R.S. and enjoy a Myrtle Beach Safari for yourself.   

The Rare Species Fund is currently developing a program to reimburse farmers for livestock lost to wild predators, including jaguars. This initiative ensures that the predators do not become a financial liability for the farmers and are therefore less likely to be illegally poached. The RSF rewards farmers in the program who set aside a minimum of twenty percent of the land to be kept in its natural wild state. This ensures that viable habitat will remain for the jaguar as well as other indigenous wildlife, including: tapirs, monkeys, toucans, sloths, caiman and spectacled bears.

Click here for more information on T.I.G.E.R.S. and the RSF.

T.I.G.E.R.S. - Spring is finally here!

Friday, April 11, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good afternoon once again from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach!  Spring is finally here!  The 2014 Season began 4 weeks ago and the dedicated Trainers at the Tour are in full force!  Make your reservation today! 

Read what others said recently:

“Once In A Lifetime Experience”
Reviewed April 5, 2014 

We took our grandsons (7 and 10) to the Barefoot Landing photo experience. They were so impressed with the tiger and chimp photo session that we were sure they would enjoy the full tour. We surprised them several days later by driving up to the bamboo gate. After several hours of petting, being petted, and feeding the elephant, they were hard pressed to decide what was the high point. The wolf pup kissed them, as did the chimp and the gibbon. Suri, the orang, was enamored of my beard and smootched me. The eagle was impressive as were the tigers chasing the lure. We also were impressed by the enthusiasm of the staff, who live and bond with the animals. Their work around the world made us proud to support their efforts. It was an excellent use of our tax refund. (We went first week in April. Check with them for times, as they are at the Landing only 5-7 until the weather warms up. There were lots of springtime babies. the wolf pups even howled for us.)

“Awesome Awesome!”
Reviewed April 1, 2014

This is such a fun and rare experience! Realize what it is before you go! It is a chance to hold a baby tiger, chimp, or wolf (wolf not always available). The money is for a fantastic cause. The time you spend with the animals is incredible. Neither of us are huge animal people but where won over with the tender personality of the chimp and the strength of the baby tiger. We loved this experience and the cause it serves with the money! Would recommend to anyone! Thank you to the hard working folks that make this happen!


“Pet the "big kitty" tiger”
Reviewed March 22, 2014

Wonderful chance to get up close and hold a baby tiger, chimp or other wild life. This is truly an amazing experience. Is absolutely awesome to hold the baby chimp and feed the tiger a bottle. The money is used to take care of the preserve. Would highly recommend for a once in a life time adventure.

Take the tour of T.I.G.E.R.S. preserve where you will connect with wildlife in a very intimate way and involve yourself personally in the lives of these amazing animals. Then walk away into the world with a desire to save these creatures and help preserve their environments.

Please visit, support and join T.I.G.E.R.S. and the R.S.F in their worldwide education and conservation efforts.  For more info, go to myrtlebeachsafari.com and rarespeciesfund.org.

 

T.I.G.E.R.S. - 2014 season opens tomorrow!

Friday, March 14, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good day from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach, SC!  Got plans for the weekend?  The weather will be spectacular and tomorrow is THE BIG DAY.  The greatest Myrtle Beach attraction opens for the 2014 season!
 
There are two ways to experience the greatest hands-on, interactive wildlife encounter in the world. You can visit T.I.G.E.R.S. Preservation Station, located at Barefoot Landing in North Myrtle Beach for free! Or you can take the T.I.G.E.R.S. Wild Encounter Tour in Myrtle Beach.


 
Wild Encounters Tour is a guided walk through a fifty acre preserve in Myrtle Beach, just 17 miles South of Barefoot Landing, where you'll meet tigers, wolves, leopards, chimpanzees, orangutans, and other endangered species, many of them up-close and un-caged! During the tour professional photographers shoot studio quality photographs and video of the tour and the T.I.G.E.R.S. Preserve experience. This gives you the opportunity to take home a set of portraits and phenomenal videos that are incomparable to any other photo opportunity.
 
This is the best way for you to support our ongoing breeding and international conservation projects and get hands on with what we do.
 
By attending the tour you get one comlimentary 8X10 photo per group of your choice from your tour. However we highly recommend our Photo CD.  Our Photo CD is a professional CD portfolio of you and the animals on the tour. It has each person in your group individually with the animals, your group together with the animals, candid shots of your day and photos of the animals themselves. You end up with several hundred photos that you have the right to reproduce as long as it is not for commerial puposes like ads, billboards, movie and television.
 
Wild Encounter Tours
5 days a week from
March 15, 2014 through October 11, 2014
Tours are on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday,
Beginning at 10:00am and lasting approx. 3 hours.

Click here to request a Wild Encounters Tour online
OR
Call 843-361-4552
 
Come to see the White Tigers, a liger and other amazing animals in Myrtle Beach at one of the most exciting animal adventures ever.  All proceeds from the tour go to The Rare Species Fund and The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species.

 

T.I.G.E.R.S. - The 2014 tour begins in 8 days!

Friday, March 7, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good Friday afternoon from T.I.G.E.R.S. and Preservation Station in Myrtle Beach.   The 2014 Season is just 8 days away! 

Some think it's too risky to get close to wild animals, but the handlers at  T.I.G.E.R.S. have been with these animals since they were cubs and have developed a special friendship based on love and respect.  Dr. Antle and his staff have actually helped the mothers deliver many of the cubs at the Preserve.  T.I.G.E.R.S. has a proven method of training these animals: Never treat them as pets, lots of tender loving care, and thousands of hours of one-on-one handling; we even live with the animals 24 hours a day.  

So have you ever wondered, What's the largest cat on earth?  

HIs name is Hercules, so you know he's got to be big.

At 922 pounds, big is an understatement for the world's largest living cat, according to the 2014 Guinness Book of World Records.

Hercules is a liger -- the hybrid offspring of a male lion and a tigress -- who lives at T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. He is 131 inches long, and measures 49 inches tall at the shoulder.

Born from a lion father and tiger mother, Hercules grew into an impressive creature, able to run at speeds of up to 50 mph and eat 100 pounds of food in one sitting.  Ligers have been known to be fat and unhealthy cats, but Hercules is an exceptional specimen that got the best from both feline races.

Despite his gigantic size, Hercules is very tame and Dr. Bhagavan, one of the liger’s caretakers, says looking into his eyes is “like looking into God’s own eyes”.

Go online and visit www.myrtlebeachsafari.com for more information about the Rare Species Fund, T.I.G.E.R.S. & Preservation Station. All proceeds from the tour go to The Rare Species Fund and The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species.

T.I.G.E.R.S. - Catasaurus Rex is One Big CAT!

Friday, February 21, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good Friday afternoon from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach.  The temps are much higher now and so is our excitement!  The 2014 season begin in just 22 days!  Make plans now to interact with big cats and other wild animals without a barrier.

Speaking of big cats, enjoy this story:

A 3-foot, 21-pound rescue cat nicknamed "Catasaurus Rex" now has a forever home after being found on the side of the road and rehomed twice.
 
When the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals advertised the massive feline last month, more than 50 people submitted adoption applications.
 
Pickles the catThe rescue decided that Andrew Milicia and his girlfriend, Emily Zarvos, would be a good fit for the feline, whose real name is Pickles.



Photo Credit: Barcroft USA
 
"When we first saw Pickles, he looked like such a beast, but he looked really cool. He's actually bigger than some dogs," Milicia told the Daily Mail. "It didn’t take him long to make himself at home and now he takes up most of the couch when he's laid out."
 
Pickles is thought to be part Maine coon, the largest breed of domestic cat. A Maine coon named Stewie currently holds the world record for longest cat.
 
"He doesn’t realize his size, so he'll knock things over all the time. He's so clumsy," Milicia said. "But it's like so hard to be mad at him. He thinks he's just like a little kitten still."
 
But at more than 20 pounds, Pickles isn’t always easy to handle.
 
"I struggle to pick him up sometimes because he weighs so much," Zarvos said.
 
Despite the difficulties in having such a large cat, Milicia and Zarvos say they can't imagine life without Pickles.
 
The large gray tabby loves to cuddle on the couch, get his nails trimmed and sleep with his new owners in their bed.
 
Although he has feline immunodeficiency virus, the shelter says as long as he stays indoors, he should stay healthy and live a long life.
 
"I'm so happy we have him,” Zarvos said. "He's the best pet you could hope for."
- By Laura Moss Mon, Feb 17, 2014 at 2:47 PM

The Wild Encounter Tour is a guided walk through a beautiful 50 acre preserve, which is taken in the company of professional photographers taking photos and video footage to capture the experience for the guests. Visitors can interact with apes, orangutans, and chimpanzees, watch tigers swim, observe gray wolves, fly trained falcons and again have the chance to sit small cubs on their laps. In addition to this the tour comes across Bubbles the four ton African elephant and the Liger, which is a cross between a lion and a tiger and is the largest cat in the world.

T.I.G.E.R.S. - Are you ready to ROAR?

Friday, February 7, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good Friday afternoon again from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach!  Are you ready to ROAR?  In just a few days, the Myrtle Beach streets will be a roaring good time as The Myrtle Beach Marathon once again partners T.I.G.E.R.S. and the Rare Species Fund to create a weekend filled with wild animal encounters up-close and eye-to-eye. Combine that with a flat, fast course, miles of sandy beaches, world class dining, shopping, golf, and entertainment and you're assured to have an exciting and wild experience!


From www.mbmyrtlbeachmaraton.com:

Do you feel like unleashing your inner beast along the edge of a continent? The Myrtle Beach Marathon has partnered with the Rare Species Fund for International Wildlife Conservation to create a weekend filled with wild animal encounters and opportunities to connect with rare species that you’ve only seen on television. Marathon runners are a perfect group to support this cause due to their love of the outdoors and desire to help the endangered and rare species throughout the world. The Myrtle Beach Marathon started as a way for runners to give back! In fact, the Myrtle Beach Marathon emerged from five Myrtle Beach residents’ participation in the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s “Team in Training” (TNT) program. In becoming a Marathon weekend, more events were added as was support for additional charities. Today, each Marathon event supports one or more charities including the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of South Carolina (since its first event in 1998), the Coastal South Carolina Chapter of the American Red Cross, and Horry County Schools.

Beginning in 2013, we have added the Rare Species Fund, a non-profit wildlife conservation group located in Myrtle Beach, SC to the recipient list. Funding for the group is derived from The Institute for Greatly Endangered and Rare Species (T.I.G.E.R.S.) located in Myrtle Beach, SC. T.I.G.E.R.S. houses a stunning group of the world’s most rare and endangered species, some of which you will meet during exciting animal encounters scheduled throughout the three-day event! Let us hear you ROAR!!

For over 25 years, their wildlife conservation and education programs have been funded entirely by offering incredible wildlife encounters.  Come visit The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species and Preservation Station to share these incredible experiences with your family and friends while helping to save some of the rarest species on Earth.

 

T.I.G.E.R.S. - The 2014 season begins in 44 days!

Friday, January 31, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good afternoon and good Friday to all from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach!  For those of you who wished for chilly weather, you got your wish!  Winter months are perfect for making plans for the warmer weather to come.  If you live here or are planning a visit, you should definitely plan to visit T.I.G.E.R.S.  The 2014 season begins in 44 days!



Read what people are saying!!!

"Interact with exotic animals, play with baby Tigers, White Tigers, Wolves, & Lions. The best money I have ever spent and look forward to doing this again! I highly reccomend this to Everyone!!!" -  M. Benson (visited 10/2013)

"We have been anticipating our visit to our Encounter since Nov of 08 The animals and caregivers are marvelous, the presentations and photos taken by the staff are one of a kind -We are thrilled to have been able to attend-Can hardly wait to visit again." - S. Lee (visited 09/2013)

" It is a first class run operation by a amazing team who does a lot of animal preservation work as well. The tours and pictures with the tiger cubs help support the animal and the preserve." - S. Webster (visited 09/2013)

"What are the right words to use, just pick, Wonderful, amazing, incredible, awesome, experience of a lifetime, the list goes on! The staff is great, the animals are the best." - G. Calboun (visited 08/2013)  

T.I.G.E.R.S.,(The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species) is a wildlife education organization, dedicated to promoting global conservation with informative, educational and entertaining interactive programs.  All of the animals can be seen up close and uncaged in close personal contact with their trainers.  When you take the tour, you are helping endangered and exotic animals everywhere.  

 

T.I.G.E.R.S. - Opening day for the Wild Encounters Tour 2014 season is in 58 days!

Friday, January 17, 2014 by Suzanne Burns

Good afternoon once again from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach!  It's getting closer and closer, the opening day for the Wild Encounters Tour 2014 season is in 58 days!  

The Wild Encounters Tour is a guided walk through a fifty acre preserve, just 17 miles South of Barefoot Landing, where you'll meet tigers, wolves, leopards, chimpanzees, orangutans, and other endangered species, many of them up-close and un-caged!

Here are two of the animals you will meet:

She has a tender heart, a nice hairy shoulder to cry on - and she knows where her zoo keeps the baby wipes.

So Anjana the chimpanzee is well qualified to be a kitten-sitter.

Since orphaned puma cub Sierra turned up at the zoo, Anjana has helped her human carers with all the feeding, cuddling and chasing duties.




Anjana and Baby Cougar

Primate mum: Anjana the chimp helps zookeepers to care for orphaned puma cub, Sierra. The chimpanzee, who is five, has lived her whole life at The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species (TIGERS) in South Carolina, in the U.S..

She learned to care for little big cats while in the charge of resident feline curator China York.

Park director Dr Bhagavan Antle said: "Chimpanzees are great learners and imitators so it wasn’t long before she took on the right behaviours that were necessary to keep the kittens in line."


Anjana and cougar

Milking it: Anjana makes sure Sierra gets fed and even knows where the wet wipes are kept

"If Sierra is running around too fast then Anjana will scoop her up and make sure she doesn’t get into any trouble."

Anjana has already helped to bring up two royal white tiger cubs, a leopard and four lions. Dr Antle added: "She is a great assistant. If you need a baby wipe you can just tell her and she’ll run off and get it."


Myrtle Beach attraction, T.I.G.E.R.S. (The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species) and the R.S.F. (Rare Species Fund) are based in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.  For more information, please visit www.myrtlebeachsafari.com.
 

T.I.G.E.R.S. - The newest RSF project

Friday, December 20, 2013 by Suzanne Burns

Merry Christmas from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach!  Support of outstanding wildlife conservation has always been the focus of Dr. Bhagavan Antle and his staff at T.I.G.E.R.S.  

Here is the newest RSF project:
 
Rare Species Fund Aids Scientists in Mountain Gorilla Conservation in Uganda


Christmas came early this year for the scientists of the Gorilla Research Clinic (run by Conservation Through Public Health, CTPH) in Buhoma, Uganda. The Rare Species Fund received their wish list and set to work helping to make it a better holiday season for the gorillas and some local inhabitants of south-western Uganda. Instead of using a sleigh to deliver a sack full of toys, the RSF arrived at the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest in a Land Rover carrying cases full of scientific equipment. Included in this delivery were more than 3000 test tubes for samples, a vortex mixer with attachments, pipettes, centrifuge adapters, 3 digital cameras, a laptop computer, microscope light bulbs and even a case of crypto-giardia tests that required refrigeration all the way from South Carolina to the jungles of Uganda. This donation is considered quite significant as these materials are all but impossible to come by in such a remote location.


Conservation Through Public Health addresses one of the primary conservation issues surrounding some of the last mountain gorillas by monitoring gorilla, human and livestock health. Mountain gorillas are highly endangered; approximately 800 currently exist. These gorillas are highly protected by local authorities, but one of their biggest threats lies in their similarity to humans and their susceptibility to many of the same diseases. This is of particular concern in Uganda where more than a third of the population is living on less than $1.50 per day. CTPH not only monitors gorilla health, their extensive community outreach programs educate local villagers about proper hygiene, livestock management and disease prevention, helping to address the problem at the source.

For over 25 years, their wildlife conservation and education programs have been funded entirely by offering incredible wildlife encounters.  Come visit The Institute of Greatly Endangered and Rare Species and Preservation Station to share these incredible experiences with your family and friends while helping to save some of the rarest species on Earth.

T.I.G.E.R.S. - Big Cat Training Part 2

Friday, December 13, 2013 by Suzanne Burns

Good day from T.I.G.E.R.S. in Myrtle Beach!  The 2014 season opens March 15 and I hope you're planning to make a reservation soon.  

Last week, I posted the first part of an article by By Dr. Bhagavan Antle, Director at T.I.G.E.R.S.  As promised, here is part 2:  

Big Cat Safety, Handling and Training

By Dr. Bhagavan Antle, Director at T.I.G.E.R.S.

Will I be able to train my own big cat?

Real animal trainers who work big cats (the couple dozen + or - that exist), very rarely if ever have accidents with members of the public. Trainers are bitten and even sometimes killed, while working and always by making stupid mistakes. Trained big cats are rare; 99.9% of all big cats are not trained.

In my experience, only 1 in 8 cats will ever be trained enough to have a contact relationship with you, when it's an adult of 7 years or more. Most stop being interested in the first 3 years and become aggressive when asked to work, many within a year. It takes a lot of time, many many hours a week to start training that will usually end in disappointment after a few years and a few thousand hours but to have real trained cats that is the only way: try and try again.


The time it takes and commitment to train a big cat is huge and goes on for years. I have meet no one who understands and practices it who is not doing it professionally i.e. being paid on a regular basis to have cats out of cage and who has no other job and does only animal training full time. Everyone else is generally fooling around and is a hazard to them self and any who come in contact with their cats.

Do not expect to understand Tigerese half as fast as you would Chinese. It takes ten years + of full time big cat experienced with many different animals under the guidance of a trainer to begin to understand big cat training. Animal training is a set of experiences that must be had in order to understand it.

A single person or a pair of people cannot work a big cat outside of a cage (no perimeter fence). It takes a team of highly trained people to walk and work with a big cat. 3 to 4 or more people with years of experience are needed to make it happen safely.


Will my big cat be safe to handle if I raise it properly?

So many people are caught up in what I call the" Born Free Myth" thinking that if they care for an infant cat it will bond to them and have a less dangerous relationship with them. Raising a cat from birth or from young has very little to do if anything with it growing up and having a relationship of trust and contact with it throughout its life. Most pro trainers prefer to start cats training at 1 year old this prevents many of the juvenile behaviors of testing and aggressive play from being a part of the traine's relationship. Many cats are very nice when they are young, but may become killers as they mature, no matter how you treat them.

Of course their are exceptions to every rule and many a cub, the keeper/handler/pet owner thinks they have the perfect one, but they are 1 in a thousand and you cannot tell you have one until it is seven to ten years old and by that time it's usually too late and someone has paid the price.

As I hear over and %^*#@ OVER Roy's tiger attacked him! As one news article says, "Roy, who has taken medication for high blood pressure for years, says he had recently begun to suffer dizzy spells." This one spell, unfortunately, occurred in the presence of a very large tiger. "I started feeling kind of weak," says Roy, who still speaks slowly but has recovered most of his German-accented speech. "I fell over."

If you fall over even the best of cats will give you a bite. Trainers need to stay on their feet and be in top physical shape. Roy was not in top shape; he had heart trouble. However, just add a sense of perspective, if he was driving on the highway it could have been much worse.

In conclusion

I still think this is your right to have your own tiger and to be killed by your own tiger; just keep it in a cage forever and don't let anyone else near you or watch you have it happen.  I often say that as a MD, I can talk you trough taking out someone's kidney but I cannot talk you through tiger training. You have to live it to understand it.

Wild Encounters Tour is a guided walk through a fifty acre preserve in Myrtle Beach, just 17 miles South of Barefoot Landing, where you'll meet tigers, wolves, leopards, chimpanzees, orangutans, and other endangered species, many of them up-close and un-caged!