At the end of October, a truck carrying 10 big cats in total from Italy to a zoo in Russia was stranded on the Polish-Belarusian border after the driver was found to be lacking proper travel documents.
One of the animals died after Belarusian authorities did not let the truck enter their country, citing missing paperwork, public broadcaster Polish Radio’s IAR news agency has reported.
Out of the nine surviving tigers, two were taken to a zoo in northern Poland, and seven were given temporary refuge by a zoo in the western Polish city of Poznań.
But the Poznań facility does not have suitable conditions to keep such a number of the animals, the PAP news agency reported.
Five of the big cats set off on a 2,000 km trip to Spain on Saturday evening: Softi, Samson, Toph, Merida and Aqua. They were fed on the way.
Two tigers – named Gogh and Kan – remained at the Poznań zoo because they were not in a fit state to undertake a long journey.
Polish prosecutors have charged two Italian citizens who drove the tigers to Poland in October with cruelty to animals.
A Russian citizen who was in charge of transporting the animals faces the same charge.