Add adorable white tiger to list of things named after Obama

 

Rounding out a list that includes a parasite, a spider and a fungus, President Obama now has an adorable white tiger cub named for him.

Last month, the Loop made a list (with pictures!) of some of the random things that have been named for the 44th president. Our examples, like the trapdoor spider “Aptostichus barackobamai,” were of newly discovered species that will live on forever with Obama’s name attached to them.

One of the white tiger quintuplets is carried by an animal keeper at the White Zoo at the Kameltheater Kernhof in St. Aegyg am Neuwalde, Lower Austria, Austria, May 26, 2014. The white tigers Lali, Lela, Lila, Lulu and Obama were born on April 25, 2014. (EPA/HANS KLAUS TECHT)
One of the white tiger quintuplets is carried by an animal keeper at the White Zoo at the Kameltheater Kernhof in St. Aegyg am Neuwalde, Lower Austria, Austria, May 26, 2014. The white tigers Lali, Lela, Lila, Lulu and Obama were born on April 25, 2014. (EPA/HANS KLAUS TECHT)

So the decision to name a baby tiger after Obama isn’t exactly the same thing — it’s not so different than your neighbor naming his dog or hamster Obama — but these tigers are an endangered species, which makes them pretty special. And they’re ridiculously adorable.

Five cubs were born at the White Zoo in Kernhof, Austria, several weeks ago. The four females were named Lali, Lela, Lila and Lula. The fifth, a male, was named Obama.

The zoo owner, Herbert Eder, told ABC News that he had no idea why the boy tiger was named Obama.

UPDATED: We couldn’t accept that there was no explanation for why the little one was named after Obama, so we reached out to Eder. In an e-mail to the Loop Wednesday morning he gave an explanation almost as sweet as the tiger cub itself:

“As you have seen, we have five wonderful white tiger cubs and one of them is a male. This little fellow is similar walking as your President of the United States and he has the same smiley face. And Obama is looking very intelligent with wonderful steel blue eyes.

We hope, that Mr. Barack Obama is not angry, when we have now a second Obama in Austria. We like him and it is lovely sign of respect to your President. We would be very happy, if Mr. President would hear about that and maybe he send us greetings from the White House ….. If not, he is at any time, when he is maybe visiting Austria in the future, our guest of honour in the White Zoo Austria flying by Air Force One to meet Obama no. 2!!”

Colby Itkowitz is a national reporter for In The Loop.
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