Tuesday, April 23, 2013

T is for Tiger

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

William Blake

The tiger is the biggest of the big cats and the most striking. Its body reaches a total body length of up to 3.3 m (11 ft) and can weigh up to 306 kg. It's also the third largest land carnivore behind the polar bear and the brown bear.



Like many other animals in this series tigers have lost much of their habitat and are now endangered. Even since the 1990s the tiger has lost 40 percent of its domain.

Still, even in zoos these powerful predators retain much of their mystique. They're like domestic cats on steroids.

The Bengal tiger is the most commonly found but numbers in India have now declined to about 2,500. The Sumatran tiger is critically endangered while the population of the Siberian tiger has plummeted. Siberian tigers are the biggest of big cats to have ever existed, weighing as much as 500 pounds. White tigers are widely bred in zoos and are an ideal fashion accessory for cheesy entertainers such as Siegfried & Roy.

Unfortuantely in 2003 the act went somewhat awry when a white tiger bit Roy's neck and almost killed him.

 A couple of gasps went up in the crowd, though many people thought the incident was part of the act. “It wasn’t like he grabbed him viciously,” audience member Andrew Cushman, was reported as saying in Reader's Digest. “He just grabbed him by the throat and walked offstage.”

Although tigers are solitary creatures, research suggests they share a kill amicably unlike lions who squabble.

While tigers will often shun human they are are thought to be responsible for more human deaths through direct attack than any other wild mammal.

Most man eater are older tigers missing teeth. This was the case in the Champawat Tiger, a tigress in India and Nepal that was responsible for an estimated 430 human deaths, the most attacks known to be perpetrated by a single wild animal per the Guinness Book, by the time she was shot dead in 1907.

Useless Fact About the Tiger

The pattern of stripes is unique to each animal, and can be used to identify them just as fingerprints are used to identify humans.

What Not To Say to a Tiger

Fancy a glass of milk kitty?

19 comments:

  1. Who doesn't love tigers? They are beautiful creatures. Last summer, hubby & I went to a local zoo/sanctuary and they had an amazing tiger exhibit and we got to watch them feed the tigers. It was awesome.

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    1. I kow right, Patricia - they are the best wo watch. Mind you at one zoo a tiger was attacking the side of the cage to get me..

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  2. Such gorgeous kitties. And it's so awful how endangered they are. At least people are out there fighting for them.

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    1. yep there is a big awareness thing Trisha - sadly the habitat loss thing continues.

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  3. Good post about these lovely animals which we've all but wiped off the map as we have with so many. Always thought that the fact about the stripe pattern being unique to each one was fascinating!

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  4. I never knew that tigers stripes were like fingerprints, I learn something new everyday just by blog hopping. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. thanks for hopping me blog Cathrina, I didn't know that either..

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  5. Oh goody, we're the jello of the geriatric tiger world.

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    1. yep like in human society you have to watch for the old ones Jean

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  6. I didn't know they were responsible for so many human deaths. I'd definitely give them a wide berth but they sure are stunning to look at. Absolutely beautiful animals. Of course, my tabby considers himself a tiger so he's probably the closest I'll ever get to one.

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  7. I know that poem! And white tigers are my favorite animal to look at, but I don't think I'll ever have the guts to hold them. Even more so after your story.

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    1. lol Dee - mind you whatshisname a Roy held them a lot of times before they were attacked.

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  8. They are beautiful creatures. It kind of boggles my mind thinking about how the pattern of stripes is unique to each animal.

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  9. Tigers are awesome animals! White tigers are especially interesting because of their fur color.

    www.modernworld4.blogspot.com

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    1. I know Gina - thx for dropping (hopping) by

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  10. I love tigers, both white Siberian and the more familiar orange ones. They're such beautiful, graceful creatures. One of the cross stitch patterns in my large queue is of a dark orange Sumatran (I think) tiger against a black background. I was really proud I found that for like $5 after being marked down multiple times, since it was a lot more expensive when I first saw it online and fell in love with it.

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