While tigers are known for their striking stripes, massive size, barbed tongues, razor sharp teeth and predatory instinct, it’s also important to recognize how cute and lovable they can be. Here are just a few photos demonstrating the gentle side of these beautiful creatures.
Tigers are the largest animals in the genus Panthera, with some males of the largest subspecies, the Siberian tiger, weighing in at over 600 pounds. The great size and strength of these big cats allows them to carry prey several miles once they have dispatched it.
Scientists at the Museum and the wild-cat conservation organization Panthera have demonstrated a new technique to non-invasively survey tigers using their scent sprays. The findings of a recent study show that DNA taken from tiger spray is just as good or even better at identifying individual tigers and their gender as scat—the “breadcrumb” that researchers have traditionally used to track the endangered animals.
“Genetic monitoring of tiger source populations is a conservation priority,” said Anthony Caragiulo, a postdoctoral researcher in the Museum’s Sackler Institute for Comparative Genomics.“The utility of this new method is really impactful because it will let us dramatically build upon the number of tigers that can be surveyed and, consequently, increase our understanding of these elusive animals—hopefully before they are gone.”
What better day than International Tiger Day to celebrate the tigers of the sea – tiger sharks! Tiger sharks are found in several national marine sanctuaries, including Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary, where this one was photographed.
As apex predators, tiger sharks are incredibly important in maintaining the balance of ocean ecosystems. But despite their important role in ocean health, tiger sharks face a number of threats, including marine debris and commercial fishing. It’s up to us to protect them – and the marine ecosystems they benefit.
The Internet’s most famous cats team up to save tigers Lil Bub, Princess Monster Truck, Nala Cat and Hamilton the Hipster Cat teamed up with Greenpeace on International Tiger Day to launch Cats Save Tigers, a social media campaign that promotes awareness about the plight of tigers.
With only 3,000 tigers left in the wild, the campaign calls on cat owners to create their own cat memes and share them with the hashtag #CatsSaveTigers to spread the word about this endangered species.
July 29th is International Tiger Day! Rapidly losing natural habitats, tigers face a precarious future. International Tiger Day was initiated to raise awareness about tiger conservation and the need for global responses to protecting natural habitats of these big kittehs.
The image is from The Wonders of the Animal Kingdom (1830) by Robert Huish, who, incidentally, was not very highly regarded in his time. In a stinging review of his book, The Late Voyage of Captain Sir John Ross, R.N. to the Arctic Regions…, the Quarterly Review (July 1835), called him “one of those industrious but unscrupulous scribblers know as booksellers’ hacks.” Unscrupulous as he may be, we still think the illustrations in the Wonders of the Animal Kingdom are worth perusing, even if the first few lines of the introduction desperately need an editor.
A tiger guarding her cubs seems to ignore two magpies scolding from a pine tree. When pictured together in paintings, tigers are messengers of the mountain spirit and magpies are envoys of the shrine deities that protect household and community.
From the villainous Shere Khan in Kipling’s Jungle Book to the protective “guardian of the west” of Korean mythology, tigers play a more vivid role in the human psyche than perhaps any other animal. Latterly they have become a symbol for conservation, and their survival on the planet has come to represent the human struggle to balance our conflicting needs and desires.
Happy International Tiger Day!
Happy International Tiger Day! We here at BAF love big cats, in fact one of the organizations we donate to is @bigcatrescue. This amazing organization works hard to provide for the cats in their care, they rescue big cats that are abused in captivity, and help stop the trade all together. If you are looking for a way to celebrate today consider checking out bigcatrescue.org.