These 22 Amazing Facts About Tigers Blew My Mind…But The Last 5 Brought Me To Tears

Tigers are some of the most amazing creatures on the planet.  In fact, Animal Planet recently voted tigers to be one of the world’s most favorite animal.  But a great deal of what we think we know about tigers is colored by common misconceptions or confusion with other large cats.  Perhaps if we grow better informed about these powerful beasts that are on the brink of extinction, we can help grow their numbers once again.

Here are 22 amazing facts about tigers you probably do not know…

1. A tiger’s legs are so powerful that they can remain standing even when dead…

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Tigers have been known to have been shot, bleed out, and die, all while standing up. Pretty crazy.

 

2. They are the largest of all the big cats, weighing up to 300k (700 pounds)…

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Just a little size comparison for you. Look at dem paws.

 

3. If you look a tiger in the eyes he is less likely to kill you…

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Tigers prefer to hunt by ambush, so by looking a tiger in the eyes you are showing him you know he is there. Now he has lost the element of surprise, and will most likely go find something else to feast on. Because of this, men in India often wear masks on the back of their head with a second face.

 

 4.Tigers are completely blind for the first week of their life. About half do not survive to adulthood…

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5. The white spot on the back of their ears is called an ocelli…

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6. Tigers have antiseptic saliva…

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7. Tiger’s tongues make our tongues look pretty sad…

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The tiger’s tongue is covered with numerous small, sharp, rear-facing projections called papillae. These papillae gives the tongue is rough, rasping texture and is designed to help strip the skin, feathers, fur and meat right off its prey. They have been known to lick the paint right off the walls of their enclosures in the zoo.

 

8. Tigers are solitary creatures…

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Tigers are solitary animals, and it actually fairly rare to see them group together in the wild. The exception to this, of course, is a mother and her cubs.

9. They’re nicer than lions…

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Unlike lions, who would fight to the death over a kill, when a tiger crosses paths with another tiger while hunting, they often share the meal together. Also, when several tigers are present at a kill, the males will wait for females and cubs to eat first, again, unlike lions, which do the opposite. Tigers rarely argue or fight over a kill and simply wait turns.

 

10. Tigers have very diverse diets…

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Tigers feed on deer antelope, wild boar, and buffalo. But did you know they also eat a variety of birds, fish, rodents, small elephants, rhinos, crocodiles, and even leopards?

11. Tigers do not normally view humans as prey…

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Tigers will only attack a human if they feel threatened. Or if they’re really really hungry and you look delicious. 😉 But seriously, if you were to ever encounter a tiger in the wild, slowly back far, far away while keeping eye contact with him. Chances are you’re in his territory and he wants you to leave more than he wants to eat you.

12. Tigers can leap distances of over 6m, and jump up to 5m vertically…

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13. A backhand from a tiger can kill you…

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While tigers prefer to use their massive teeth to crush their victim’s neck (lovely!), a single strike is enough to do the job. One swipe from a tiger’s front paw is strong enough to smash a bear’s skull and even break its spine.

 

14. Tigers have been known to imitate the call of other animals to successfully attract prey…

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15. Tigers have a brain that weighs over 300g…

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It is the 2nd largest brain of all carnivores, the largest being the brain of a polar bear.

 

16. Tigers are adept swimmers…

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Unlike almost all other big cats, they enjoy bathing and often play in the water. As adults, they often swim several kilometers to hunt or to cross rivers. The only other big cat that doesn’t mind getting wet is the black panther. However, they don’t seek out water or play in the water like tigers do.

 

17. They have an amazing short term memory…

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Cats in general have been found to have a better memory than any other animal, including humans, being several hundred times better than dogs and dozens of times better than primates. Tigers’ short-term memory alone lasts about thirty times longer than humans’, and their memories are made with stronger brain synapses, meaning that they can remember more and do not forget things as easily as we do.

 

18. There were once nine subspecies of tigers: Now only 6 remain…

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Three subspecies of tiger have been killed off in the last 80 years.

19. The Balinese tiger was purposely hunted to extinction…

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Due to the Balinese cultural belief that tigers represent evil and destruction. Above is one of the only known photographs of a Balinese tiger.

 

20. There are a greater number of tigers in captivity in the US alone than there are wild tigers left on earth…

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21. The white tiger has become even rarer in the wild due to trophy hunting or capture for the exotic pet trade…

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There have been no recorded sightings of these elusive predators in the wild for the past 50 years. Today, the white tiger can still be found in a handful of zoos and animal sanctuaries.

 

22. It has been estimated that all the last remaining subspecies of tigers could become extinct in the wild in as little as 15 years…

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We have lost 97% of the wild tiger population in the last century, and numbers continue to get lower.

Please help us spread the word about these majestic beasts by sharing this story.  With your help, we can spread awareness about the decline of these wonderful creatures.

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