Tigers are one of the deadliest, most gorgeous creatures on Earth, and this names them interesting and special to exist. Although they are becoming extinct now, with over 95% of wild tigers vanishing over the last 100 years, these majestic creatures are still one of the leaders of the jungle.
With their alert green eyes and huge striped bodies, they look both cuddly and ferocious. But, there are many things we still don’t know about these creatures.
Here, you will learn incredible facts about tigers, from how they enjoy having a great splash to how they can mate with other species of wild cats.
Jump in to discover ten amazing facts about this extraordinary creature.
1. Cubs born to tigers are blind at birth
As untrue as it might sound, this is a fact. All tiger cubs can not see anything when they are born. They have to depend on their mothers’ scents for support and guidance.
Unfortunately, most of them are unable to survive for long without their sight. The cubs are unable to do anything on their own, so they die of hunger, and frostbite. Some of them even get eaten by other big tigers!
2. The tiger’s saliva is antiseptic
Tigers have antiseptic saliva, and this helps them a lot. Whenever they have an injury or a bruise, all they need to do is lick the affected area to prevent infections. Now you know that if you have an injury and your doctor is busy, you can meet a tiger to do you the honors!
3. Tiger stripes are also visible on their skin, not just in their fur
Unless you’ve skinned one before, no one expects the tiger stripes to be extended to skin. But right beneath their furs are stripes too. Each tiger has a different type of pattern. The patterns on their bodies are as unique to them as fingerprints are unique to human beings; it is their identity.
4. Tigers’ urine smells nice
You would expect the urine that comes from a tiger to be ten times as awful as that of humans. But, you would be so wrong.
Tigers’ urine actually smells amazing, kind of like buttered popcorn. But don’t go close when you smell it. They use this scent to make their territories and tell intruders off.
5. Tigers love to swim
Tigers are one creature that loves to swim. They enjoy splashing around in the water. They can swim very far in the water, and sometimes, they hunt in the water too.
Mother tigers take time to teach their cubs how to swim (how adorable!) So, if a tiger is chasing you, running into the water might not be a good idea.
6. There are six different species of tigers
If you didn’t know before, now is probably the best time to know that there are not one, not two, but six different species of tigers! Yeah, unbelievable, right? But that’s the truth.
They are the South China Tigers, the Bengal Tigers, the Indochinese Tigers, the Sumatran Tigers, the Siberian Tigers, and the White Tigers.
White tigers are the rarest of them all, as they are rarely found in the wild. They are usually bred in the zoo, with their pale skins and beautiful blue eyes. But this is seen as animal cruelty because they are generally unhealthy and not as agile as the tigers in the wild.
The Siberian tiger is the biggest of all species and is usually found in China and Russia. On the other hand, the Sumatran tiger is the smallest of its kind.
7. Tigers and other big cats can mate
Tigers are one of the species that are inter-fertile. This means they can breed with other big cats. And when they reproduce, the offspring is usually an hybrid.
When a male tiger mates with a female lion, their hybrid offspring is called a Tigon. When a male lion mates with a female tiger, their hybrid offspring is called a Liger.
The Tigon is considered one of the largest, if not the largest, species of wild cats that exist. They can grow way bigger than a Liger and are quite ferocious. Well, it is expected of them to be ferocious.
Cross-breeding of tigers is not accepted in every country as it has been banned in Taiwan. But if you want to see a real Tigon, they can be found in Russia, China, UAE, Argentina, the United States of America, Iran, the Czech Republic, and India.
8. Tigers are surprisingly humble creatures
Contrary to what you might think, tigers are pretty humble creatures, which is quite surprising. Male tigers usually hold some level of reverence for the females. Moreover, tigers rarely roar in their groups or get into confrontations, and the males don’t lord over the group somewhat as lions do. Most times, the male tigers allow the female tigers and cubs to feed first before they eat. If that’s not chivalry, I don’t know what is.
9. Tigers are loners
Although you might see them as a group in zoos, tigers are primarily solitary creatures and love to be alone. In the wild, you very rarely come across tigers of the same age group together. Most times, they stay alone, either taking a walk, having a nap, or just strategizing on how to get the next meal.
10. Tigers are not picky feeders
Unlike other wild herbivores, tigers have a vast diet and can virtually eat anything that comes their way. From antelopes to bears to boars to birds to crocodiles. Tigers can also eat fish! But the wildest thing about these creatures is that they eat other wild cats like leopards. Nothing is really safe from the claws of the orange and black wild beast.
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