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To know everything about this magnificent animal that is the tiger will undoubtedly take you years of study. That's why we offer you through this article some facts about our favorite feline that certainly includes things you already know, but also some surprises. Let's discover today 40 interesting facts about tigers.
1) In addition to being the enormous cat in Asia, the tiger is the largest cat and land predator.
2) Tigers never chase their prey (or at least not for very long); they lie in wait and ambush their prey. They slowly crawl towards their prey until they are close enough to pounce.
3) One of the most common tiger is Bengal Tiger. It lives mainly in India and represents 50% of the entire tiger population (all subspecies).
4) A tiger in captivity can live up to 24-26 years, which is more than twice as long as a tiger in the wild (12 years on average).
5) Unlike cats, the tiger is an excellent swimmer and loves water. Why is that? Simply because it is the best way to cool down in tropical regions where the heat is intense.
6) Tigers communicate using scent marks, visual cues, and many sounds such as roars, growls, whines, meows, and hisses. However, fact number 7.
7) Tigers are solitary animals; they only meet to reproduce. In case 2 male tigers or two female tigers meet, conflict is inevitable.
8) The slightest paw of a tiger can be fatal for a human being. Indeed, the tiger's strength is incredible, and even while playing innocently, this feline could easily hurt you.
9) Tiger cubs are born blind and depend on their mother to survive for two weeks.
10) These same baby tigers reach their adult size in only two years. They go from a withers height of 10 to 100 centimeters! Impressive, isn't it?
11) Unfortunately, it is estimated that about 63% of young tigers die before reaching adulthood. The causes? Floods, fires, other animals, but most of all, infanticide of adult male tigers or because their mother was shot.
12) Tigers can mate with other cats! If a lion mates with a tigress, it is a born, a hybrid feline. On the other hand, in the case of a reproduction of a tiger with a lioness, the newborn is a tigon.
13) The tiger can reach a speed of a little more than 60 km/h but on a very short distance (less than 100 meters).
14) The tiger can imitate the sound of some of its prey, especially the sambar—an excellent way to attract innocent game to ambush them.
15) At the beginning of the 20ᵉ century, there were over 100,000 tigers across Asia and Russia, today it is estimated that just over 4200 remains.
16) Tigers, like most felines, can purr.
17) Tigers all have white spots surrounded by black fur on the back of their ears. It is thought that these serve as false eyes to discourage other species from attacking them from behind or to help tiger cubs follow their mother into the tall grass. Nothing is sure, though!
18) The tiger is a nocturnal animal. It hunts mostly at nightfall, its night vision is rather efficient to hunt vegetarian animals which do not have this advantage. It then takes advantage of the day to rest.
19) The Siberian Tiger is the largest subspecies of tiger.
20) The stripes on a tiger's forehead mostly resemble the Chinese character for "king".
21) The back legs of a tiger are longer than its front legs, making it a running, jumping and leaping machine.
22) The tiger's stripes are sort of equivalent to the fingerprints of us humans. That is, no tiger has the same.
23) The tiger's canines can measure up to 10 cm, yes, you need big teeth to be able to finish off a baby elephant.
24) A tiger can eat about one fifth of its weight in one meal, about 40 kg. In one year, an adult male tiger can eat up to 3700 kg of meat.
25) A Siberian tiger has nearly 10,000 hairs per square inch, or about 3,000 hairs in a single square inch of skin.
26) You can hear the roar (the fire to be exact) of a tiger for 3 km through a forest.
27) Although the tiger is a formidable hunter, only one in twenty hunts ends in a kill. In areas where prey is scarce, the number of successful hunts is even lower.
28) The tiger can kill its prey instantly with a single bite to the neck through the spinal cord. It can also quite easily strangle it in the throat, which takes a little longer.
29) There are currently as many tigers living in zoos and wildlife parks as in the wild.
30) The Latin name for the tiger is Panthera tigris. The word Panthera comes from Greek and means "hunter," while Tigris is an ancient Persian word meaning "swift" or "arrow-like."
31) A tiger spends about 18 hours a day sleeping.
32) The Sumatran tiger is the smallest of the tigers. A male tiger weighs about 120 kg, which is about the same weight as a female lion.
33) An adult tiger can jump over 9 meters (8 m high) and jump up to 5 meters vertically (5 m long).
34) The Sundarbans swamp forest on the border of India and Bangladesh is the tiger attack capital of the world. About 600 Bengal tigers live there, and they kill up to 100 people every year.
35) The South China tiger has the fewest stripes, while the Sumatran tiger has the most.
36) Tigers not only have striped fur, but they also have striped skin.
37) A tiger's tail helps it balance while running. Its tail can be as long as one-third of its body length.
38) There are black tigers, but none live in captivity.
39) Contrary to popular belief, tigers do not live in Africa.
40) Each tiger has its scent thanks to individualized scent glands.