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Moka, the tiger rescued from Otay Mesa border, settles into Alpine home

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Posted at 12:47 PM, Jun 19, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-19 15:47:49-04

ALPINE, Calif. (KGTV) - The latest cuddly resident of Lions, Tigers, and Bears is beginning to settle into his new home.

Moka, who grew up at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park after being rescued at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry last year, moved to the Alpine sanctuary this month. And the Bengal tiger cub is settling in well.

LTB caretakers are allowing Moka to get used to his surroundings and keeping him separated from another tiger, Nola, who was also rescued from illegal animal trading.

RELATED: Customs and Border Protection agents seize tiger cub at US-Mexico border

Since Moka is likely a hybrid of several species of tiger, he would not be considered a good candidate for a zoo breeding program.

The animal sanctuary said he was moved to Alpine said it's routine to keep animals separate for a period of time before moving them into larger habitats.

"He will be living the rest of his life here with our white tiger cub Nola, who was also rescued from the illegal animal trade," the sanctuary said. "Moka's story illustrates the importance of sanctuaries such as LTB, which are often an animal's last hope for safe refuge."

LTB is preparing to launch their "No Place Like Home" campaign, in order to raise funds to build their next habitat. The new multi-acre, open-air habitat will feature big cat comforts such as rocks, trees, large watering holes, natural rolling terrain, and wide open space.