A tiger cub who was rescued after authorities discovered that a Riverside County man was trying to smuggle it from Mexico, now has a name.
Back in August, the 4-month-old Bengal tiger was discovered lying on the floor of a vehicle between the legs of a passenger at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry in San Diego.
The driver, 18-year-old, Riverside County resident Luis Eudoro Valencia, was arrested.
Officials seized the tiger cub and it was taken to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park.
The tiger cub remained nameless until now. The zoo put a list of six possible names for people to vote on Facebook. All names reflected the animals’ homelands.
About 11,000 voters chose Moka, as its name, which means chance.
Moka was paired with a 5-month-old Sumatran tiger brought in from the Smithsonian National Zoo in September after his mother began acting aggressively toward him. In the same Facebook poll, Rakan,’ which means friend, was voted to be its name.
Great cat experts say it’s best to raise cubs in pairs. The two can be viewed at the park’s Tull Family Tiger Trail.
Bengal tigers are considered to be endangered, with Sumatran tigers listed as critically endangered. The main threats are poaching and loss of habitat, according to the Zoo.