ZOO bosses are delighted about their newest arrivals – which are boosting the population of one of the world’s most threat - ened creatures.

Three Sumatran tiger cubs have been born at Flamingo Land zoo near Pickering and on Wednesday will be allowed outside for the very first time.

The cubs, two female and one male, were born on March 22 to the zoo’s own breeding pair – mother Surya and father Bawa – and have yet to be named.

It is estimated that the world population of Sumatran tigers is now as low as 400 – so the new arrivals have boosted that figure by almost one per cent.

“We are extremely proud,” said a spokesman. “This is a significant figure and helps make a real dif - ference.”

“It is also good that the cubs are of both sexes – they will be able to go on and do their bit to improve the population in the future.”

The average life expectancy of Sumatran tigers in the wild is only four years, but the expected lifes - pan of Surya and Bawa is more than 20 years.