Siegfried and Roy’s Tigers Are Still Big-Ticket Attractions in Las Vegas
What happened to Siegfried and Roy’s tigers? Learn more about the big cats’ life now after the deaths of the Las Vegas performers.
Famed Las Vegas entertainer Siegfried Fischbacher died on Wednesday, Jan. 13 — eight months after the death of his onstage partner, Roy Horn — but what happened to Siegfried and Roy’s tigers?
Turns out, many of the lions and tigers from Siegfried and Roy’s successful Vegas show are still in Sin City, at a habitat the duo set up at their Mirage home base…
Many of the cats are now on display in Las Vegas.
According to Las Vegas Magazine, many of the tigers and lions that appeared on stage with the duo — plus leopards and panthers — are now kept at Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat, an attraction at The Mirage in Las Vegas, Nev., the same casino where Siegfried and Roy performed from 1990 to 2003.
“Our mission is to enhance guests’ understanding and appreciation of the animals and the environments in which they live. This is accomplished by highlighting the human-animal bond, bringing animals and people together through continued education and research,” the habitat says on its official website.
The habitat is in its 30th year.
“Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat opened in 1990 with a focus on scientific research, education and conservation outreach,” the website adds. “The animals are ambassadors for their species and ecosystems, and we take every measure to ensure their health and well-being.”
The habitat welcomed four tiger cubs in 2015, as the Los Angeles Times reported at the time: Liberty, an all-white female; Maharani, a white female with stripes; Hirah, a golden female with stripes; and Justice, a golden male.
Unfortunately, Liberty and Justice both died of kidney failure later that year. “All of us in the Siegfried & Roy animal family are devastated by the loss of these two majestic cubs, read a Facebook statement posted on Roy’s behalf. “In the short time we had with them, they touched the hearts of people around the world … With this loss we are tragically reminded of the fragility of life for all of God’s creatures and our life-long commitment to conservation will forever be inspired by Liberty and Justice.”
Carole Baskin’s Big Cat Rescue cast doubt on the Siegfried & Roy cats’ “allegedly idyllic life.”
In 2019, a Big Cat Rescue blog post — one that is unsigned but perhaps written by CEO and Tiger King subject Carole Baskin — criticized a recent 20/20 profile on Siegfried and Roy and cast doubt on their cats’ wellbeing.
“Instead of showing scenes of Roy kissing and riding tigers over and over and tigers lounging on the grounds and pools and the allegedly idyllic life at Magic Garden, they could have interviewed real experts (not me) about what life is really like for these animals, many of whom reportedly spend most of their time in a warehouse,” the post reads.
“The show said they have 52 tigers on 7 acres called the Magic Garden. Only about 5 were shown. Why didn’t they get to see inside the warehouse where insiders say the tigers are stockpiled in barren cages? Siegfried and Roy owe their fame and fortune to those cats. What do the cats have to show for their sacrifices?”
Nevertheless, Siegfried & Roy’s Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat continues to welcome visitors Thursdays through Sundays at The Mirage, and the casino hasn’t announced any change to its opening schedule after Siegfried’s death.