Mike VII was born September 13, 2016. He was introduced to the LSU community on August 21, 2017, the first day of classes at LSU.
LSU announced that the rescue tiger, “Harvey,” arrived on campus on Aug. 15 and was being housed in the night house of the tiger habitat. The 11-month-old, male tiger was being quarantined in the night house so that he could be observed by LSU veterinarians to ensure that he is healthy and a good fit for LSU. The tiger acclimated well to his new surroundings and was deemed ready to become Mike VII. LSU held a welcome event for Mike VII almost one month after his arrival on campus and on his birthday.
Mike VII, who has both Siberian and Bengal characteristics, was donated to LSU from a sanctuary in Okeechobee, Fla., called “Wild at Heart Wildlife Center.” Mikes IV, V and VI were also donated to LSU from rescue facilities. LSU has not purchased a tiger since Mike III in 1958, and LSU does not support the for-profit breeding of tigers. By providing a home for a tiger that needs one, LSU hopes to raise awareness about the problem of irresponsible breeding and the plight of tigers kept illegally and/or inappropriately in captivity in the U.S.
The tiger habitat and LSU’s animal care plan are licensed by the USDA. The facility, tiger and animal care programs are inspected annually to ensure that they comply with the Federal Animal Welfare Act and other USDA policies and guidelines.