Joshua Lewis (Courtesy)
This beautiful big cat is a rare find in the wild today. The Siberian tiger is unique among other tiger species. Why? This is the sub-species of tiger that inhabits snowy regions. Also known as the Amur tiger, they exist heavily in the eastern forests of Russia. Being the largest of the big cats, they can weigh in at 700 pounds and possess the strength of 13 men. This is a big help in allowing the tiger to rest peacefully with no natural enemies. They are the top predators of their habitat.
As the top predator in their environment, they have a variety of prey items. Wild boars roam the same forests as the tigers do. They are common prey for Siberian tigers. Hunting boar is not easy, though. They are equipped with razor-sharp tusks that could injure or even kill the big cat if it isn't careful. When chasing their prey, the tiger can run at an incredible 50 miles per hour. However, they can only produce these speeds in short bursts since it costs them much energy, and they do not possess the stamina of canines. They prefer to get close enough to their prey so that they can pounce on them within a few bounds, saving as much energy as possible.
An Endangered Species
Compared to other tiger species, the Siberian tiger has much thicker fur to retain heat in the cold weather they endure each year. With their fur comes those brilliant stripe patterns. Every tiger has a different stripe pattern, just like how humans have a unique set of fingerprints. Sadly though, their stripes have also become their demise. Poachers hunt the tigers for their fur and body parts that are used for decoration and medicinal purposes. Habitat destruction has also reduced their numbers drastically over the years. There may be as few as 500 Amur tigers left in the wild today. A small pocket of Siberian mountains is that is left of their home. The number of tigers in the wild would not even be able to fill a football stadium! It is truly a scary thought to live with.
Joshua Lewis (Courtesy)
The tiger is Mostly solitary. Tigers that are mating can regularly be observed together. Other than that, they tend to keep a respectable distance. The territory of an individual tiger will sometimes overlap with the regions of other tigers as well. Confrontation can quickly erupt if rival tigers cross paths. They will brutally defend their space if the need ever arose. It is a big deal for tigers to define their own space. To mark their territory, which can be miles wide, they spray trees with their urine to let intruders know that that area doesn't belong to them. Their scent trail surprisingly has the famous scent of buttered popcorn.
A Lasting Mark
Beautiful animals like these are truly amazing to observe. Being a rare species, they are enchanting when seen with the naked eye. Tigers have made a huge and positive impact on society. They have made their mark in legends, history, even poetry. We can all agree that tigers are one of nature's unforgettable icons. So many from all over the world come to see them in their natural habitat. You will never forget seeing your first tiger. It is truly something that will leave a mark in your heart and memory. For more animal facts, be sure to click on the Animals facts tab above.