UK's oldest tiger Tango dies aged 22

Tango Image copyright Woodside Wildlife Park
Image caption Tango was hugely popular with visitors to the park

​The oldest tiger in the UK has died aged 22 at a wildlife park in Lincolnshire.

Woodside Wildlife Park said: "It is with great sadness that we must announce the passing away of Tango the tiger."

The park asked people to share their memories and photographs of Tango, who was moved to Lincolnshire in 2014 after being rescued from a German circus.

Tango and his partner were saved hours before they were due to be put down.

On his 20th birthday, Tango was given a cardboard birthday cake filled with meat to celebrate his milestone.

Speaking at the time, Ben Pascoe, head keeper at the park, said: "He's the equivalent of about an 80-year-old man and I don't know of any 80-year-old men that are still running about."

Tigers usually live to about 16, and occasionally into their late teens, he said.

The world's oldest known tiger, Flavio, a male Siberian/Bengal tiger, died at Big Cat Rescue in Tampa, Florida, in 2014. Staff at the centre said he was aged 25.

Tango's eventful life

Image copyright Woodside Wildlife Park
  • Tango was bred in captivity in the UK
  • When he was rescued there were reports claiming he had once featured in an advert for Esso, which had the slogan "Put a tiger in your tank"
  • Esso said it used several tigers in adverts and could not confirm that Tango had been used
  • Tango worked in a German circus with his partner Julia until they were seized by Belgian and German authorities in late 2013, after reports they were being mistreated
  • They arrived in Lincolnshire in April 2014, following a campaign by park director Neil Mumby and his team to save them

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