Niabi Zoo tiger dies

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The Niabi Zoo’s Bengal tiger, Asia, was found dead in her exhibit Thursday morning, March 29, 2012.

A zookeeper on routine morning rounds made the discovery.

A statement from Interim Zoo Director Marc Heinzman said the tiger’s death was unexpected.

“We are all very saddened and shocked by Asia’s sudden death.  Asia was beloved by the entire Niabi Zoo staff, zoo volunteers, and countless zoo visitors.  Her charming personality and friendly demeanor quickly charmed any person she met.  Asia will be missed,” the statement said.

Asia was 12 years old.

A necropsy is planned to determine the tiger’s cause of death.