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