- Tigers are apex predators and popularly known as ‘king of the jungle’ in many countries and cultures.
- Tigers are one of the species that has suffered a lot from habitat loss and is now classified as ‘Endangered’.
- They are incomparable in strength, agility and cunning when it comes to stalking and hunting its prey.
Tigers are finely tuned killing machines – apex predators and highly skilled hunters. There are nine subspecies of tiger and each has a slightly different coloration but they are all large and magnificent creatures. Despite their huge size, they are surprisingly agile and this is captured perfectly in this slow motion short vid. We see an adult tiger eagerly anticipating a meal and springing many feet into the air when the meat is hurled out of the truck!
The Hunting Machine That Is the Tiger
Tigers have size, speed, 4-inch-long sharp claws and sharp teeth which enable them to catch their prey in the wild. A grown tiger can weigh up to 675 pounds and grow up to 10.5 feet in length. They are carnivores and have to capture large quantities of meat to survive. In the wild, a tiger would hunt deer, antelope buffalo, and wild boar but they will also devour monkeys, and have even been known to eat a crocodile. They usually eat once a week but have huge portions – up to 75 pounds of meat in one enormous meal! If they don’t manage to finish off the meal in one sitting, they will hide it under some leaves and come back for it later.
In this short clip we see a combination of attributes that tigers use to hunt successfully. Initially, we see total focus and commitment as the tiger paces around whilst staring at the meat and prepares the hind legs, in particular, for an explosive burst of energy. Then we see the power of the hind leg muscles as the body is propelled into the air. Finally, we have to marvel at the accuracy as the tiger twists in midair to grab at the meat with both forelimbs and secures it before it reaches the ground.
Tiger Habitat Loss and Competition
The tigers in the footage are clearly on a reserve and only have each other to compete with. We are sure that the other tiger in this vid also got their fair share of meat a bit later! Sadly, in the wild, this is not the case. Due to deforestation, the tiger’s habitat is under threat and there is too much competition for food so numbers are decreasing. Also, they are poached because tiger skin, fur and teeth are highly prized and valuable. It would be a tragedy if this magnificent animal were to become extinct but there is some good news.
According to World Wildlife Fund data, wild tiger numbers are stabilizing and are slightly increasing in areas such as Russia, China, Bhutan and Nepal. There is still a lot to do though because tigers in Southeast Asia are currently in crisis.
Is this Normal Behavior for Tigers?
Tigers are apex predator, and does not have any parallel in the jungle. The only other apex predator that compares with Tigers in ferocity are alligators in the water. There have been quite a many legendary fights between these two creatures, however, neither could prove hierarchy over the other in their natural habitat.
Tigers are well known for hiding in plain sight and stalking its prey for hours before jumping out, leaping on it and catching it unawares. Tigers are powerful animals they usually kill their prey by breaking their neck between their powerful jaw. It is also normal for Tigers to jump 18 to 20 feet in air while hunting its prey.
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