Tigers and lions in Arkansas barn
The animals are set to be deported to Germany next weekArkansas Game and Fish Commission

Officials in Arkansas are investigating the discovery of dozens of exotic animals including tigers, lions and a leopard, over the weekend of 9 September. An anonymous tip was sent to the Poinsett County Sheriff's Department which visited a barn in Poinsett to find the menagerie of caged animals.

Speaking to the owners of the site, Kait8 reported that the animals, which included seven tigers, six lions and a leopard, were being temporarily housed until they are shipped to Germany.

Randy Zellers from the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission said: "We're actually still going back and looking back and verifying all the information on the history of these animals and where their origin is, but we do know these animals, he does have the paperwork and he does have the proper licenses to move forward and to have these animals shipped to Germany which is their final destination."

No charges or arrests have been made yet while police investigate.

Poinsett County Sheriff Kevin Molder said: "At the time I didn't know exactly how many, I could just see from outside and it was just it was not something that I'd ever seen, with the exception of at the zoo and not being that close to that kind of animal, they're amazing animals."

Large carnivores including big cats have strict importation restrictions on them and written consent is needed from the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission to handle them in the state.

Wildlife officers have been stationed at the farm until they are moved and to ensure their health and safety.

If all the documentation is approved, then the animals will be taken to Memphis on Tuesday 12 September before being sent to Germany next Monday (18 September).