Make your own free website on Tripod.com

Tigers In General




TIGERS in General

Tigers belong to the cat family, and are the biggest of the big cats, a group which includes lions, jaguars and leopards. Adults weighing on average 310kg(680lb.). They are about 3m including their tail, which is about a metre in length. Females are slightly smaller in size than the male weighing on average 140kg. Their coat ranges in colour from orange-red to brownish-yellow with black stripes mainly positioned vertically. The stripes differ in shape and size, making every Tiger unique. The throat, insides of legs and belly fur is a whitish colour. Some tigers have a ruff growth of hair surrounding their heads, but not as long as a lions mane. The black lines serve to break up their body shape in tall grasslands. These stripes also serve as identifying markers because, just like human fingerprints, no two tigers have the same pattern of stripes.

Tigers may live up to 15 years in the wild. Most of this time is spent alone, coming together only to mate. The mating period lasts only a few days, then male and female go their separate ways once again. A tigerís front paws are large and strong to bring down prey. The front paws of a tiger have five toes each. The claws can be pulled inside while the tiger walks, which helps keep the claws sharp. Tigers also use their claws to mark their territory by scratching on trees. Conveniently, this also sharpens the claws. Using its paws, it then covers the leftovers with grass and dirt to hide it from vultures and other scavengers. The size of their territory is about 52m2. Tigers mostly live alone but they are not unfriendly, if two Tigers meet while hunting they will rub heads as a greeting or at the very most share a meal. Some Tigers do not have any specified territory and roam around freely.

People admire the tiger for its strength and beauty, but they fear it because they are known to kill human beings, yet almost all-wild tigers avoid people. Probably only 3 or 4 out of every 1000 tigers eat people and most of these are sick or wounded animals, that can no longer hunt large prey.

Tigers' Gender Difference
Male Tigers
There is some variation in size among the subspecies, males generally measure about 8 ft 6in and 10ft 9in from their nose to the tip of their tail and weigh about 330 to 680 pounds. Males also have ruffs of hair around their cheeks. A male tiger's territory might encompass up to 25 square miles, while a female's range is about 8 to 10 square miles. Male tigers are willing to share their territory with females, but will not tolerate other males. Tigers mark their territory by scratching trees, scraping the ground, and spraying trees, rocks, and bushes with urine.

Female Tigers and their Babies
Female tigers are somewhat smaller than the male tigers, and they can weigh between 220 to 350 pounds and in length 7ft 6in to 9ft. Female tigers will carry their babies for 3 to 3 1/2 months, and usually have 3 to 4 cubs, though they can have up to 6 cubs. The cubs are born blind. After about 2 weeks the cubs will open their eyes and their first teeth will begin to grow. Their mother seldom leaves them alone during this time. When the cubs are about 3 months old they will start to venture out of their den. The mother will bring them meat to eat from her hunting trips, but they will still take her milk until they are about 6 months old. Female tigers will carry their babies for 3 to 3 1/2 months, and usually have 3 to 4 cubs, though they can have up to 6 cubs. The cubs are born blind. After about 2 weeks the cubs will open their eyes and their first teeth will begin to grow. Their mother seldom leaves them alone during this time. When the cubs are about 3 months old they will start to venture out of their den. The mother will bring them meat to eat from her hunting trips, but they will still take her milk until they are about 6 months old. Female tigers allow their cubs to feed first even if the prey is small and she may go without. (The cubs can live up to 20 years, if in the wild. The tigers' daughters tend to settle near their mother, sons disperse greater distances.)


**************


Tigers' Food and Power


How Tigers Hunt?

Tigers like to hunt alone, preferring not to share a meal. There is only a 1 in 10 chance that a Tiger will catch its prey. They prefer catching larger animals like wild pigs to rodents. Tigers rarely attack humans but, if hungry or injured, is the most likely big cat to do so. They hunt mainly at night and depend on their sharp eyes and ears. Tigers do not stalk their prey but instead jump out at it, using the method of surprise to catch its victims. There teeth are very well suited to hunting. The Tiger will eat the entire carcass except the stomach and bones. A tigerís front paws are large and strong to bring down prey. The front paws of a tiger have five toes each. The claws can be pulled inside while the tiger walks, which helps keep the claws sharp. Tigers also use their claws to mark their territory by scratching on trees. Conveniently, this also sharpens the claws.

Tigers are patient hunters and can move slowly and quietly, stalking their prey for 20 or 30 minutes. A tigerís large canine teeth and powerful jaws are used to grab a prey animal by the neck and suffocate it. Tigers use their sandpaper-rough tongues to scrape the last bits of meat from the bones of a meal. A tiger will make a kill once or twice a week and eat as much as it can. Using its paws, it then covers the leftovers with grass and dirt to hide it from vultures and other scavengers. The tiger will return to the kill over the next few days for smaller snacks. In the wild, they prefer pigs and deer, while in some parts of Asia they may bring down a rhino or elephant calf. At the San Diego Zoo and the Wild Animal Park the tigers are fed a varied diet, including a ground beef mixture with vitamins and minerals, carcasses, and large bones.

Tigers in general hunt and eat wild deer, cattle, Barking deer, sambar, elk, chital, Swamp deer, Red deer, rusa deer, wild pigs and bison. There are reports of tigers attacking bears, wolves and even elephants and rhinos. They occasionally kill domestic livestock and, in rare instances, become man-eaters. Additionally, a tiger may hunt with a mate during breeding season, but this is strictly a temporary arrangement restricted to the few weeks when the tigress is in season.

**************


Where Tigers Live?


Wild Tigers are found only in Asia. Before the 1800ís Tigers lived in the southern part of this region but because of hunting and the clearing of forests, Tigers are no longer able to survive here. Wildlife experts consider Tigers to be an endangered species. Different types of Tigers live in different climates like the warm rainforests of Malaya, the bleak thorn woods of India and the chilly forests of Northern China. Tigers, unlike Lions prefer to stay hidden in the shadows instead of roaming the open grasslands. As I already talked about tigers and where they mostly live. The tigers ran though Russia, Siberia, Iran, Afghanistan, India, China and southern Asia, Including the Indonesian islands.

There were nine types of tigers on earth. (but very few of them left)

To find about different types of tigers and facts Click Here>>>>>Different Types of Tigers




Tigers



RUPINDER KAUR