Saturday, January 22, 2011



The tiger (Panther Tigris),
A member of the Felidae family,
The Tiger is the largest
of the four "big cats"
Native to eastern
and southern Asia,
The tiger reaching up to three
point three meters in total length.
Weighing up to three hundred kilograms
Aside from their great bulk and power,
Their most recognizable feature
is a pattern of dark vertical stripes
Those overlays near-white
to reddish-orange fur,
with lighter underpants.

The most numerous tiger subspecies
is the Bengal tiger,
While the largest is the Siberian tiger
Tigers have a lifespan of
Ten to Fifteen years in the wild,
But can live longer
than twenty years in captivity.
They are highly adaptable…
From the Siberian taiga
To open grasslands
And tropical mangrove swamps.
They are territorial
and generally solitary animals,
Often requiring large
contiguous areas of habitat
that support their prey demands.

They are indigenous to some
of the more densely populated
places on earth,
That has caused significant
conflicts with humans.
Three of the nine subspecies
of modern tiger have gone extinct,
And the remaining six
are classified as endangered,
some critically so.
The primary direct causes
are habitat destruction,
fragmentation and hunting…
Tigers have existed
from Mesopotamia, Caucasus
throughout South and East Asia.

The range of the species
is reduced, while all surviving species
are under formal protection.
Poaching, habitat destruction
and inbreeding depression
continue to threaten the tigers.
Tigers are among the most recognizable
and popular of the world's
charismatic mega-fauna.
Featured prominently
in ancient mythology and folklore,
and continue to be depicted
in modern films and literature.

Tigers appear on many flags,
coats of arms, as mascots
for sporting teams…
Tiger, the national animal
of several Asian nations,
including India.
The word "tiger" is taken
from the Greek word "Tigris",
Possibly derived from
a Persian source meaning "arrow",
A reference to the animal's speed
and also the origin
for the name of the Tigris river.
In American English,
"tigress" was first recorded in 1611.
The generic component
of its scientific designation,
Panthera tigris, is often presumed
to derive from Greek
pan - means("all") ther of ("beast"),
but this may be a folk etymology.

It came into English
through the classical languages,
Panthers is probably of Indian origin,
meaning "the yellowish animal",
or "whitish-yellow".
Large Island inhabited
by tigers today is Sumatra.
Tigers vanished from Java and Bali
during the 20th century.
In Borneo they are known only
from fossil remains.
Compared to the lion,
the tiger prefers denser vegetation,
For which its camouflage coloring
is ideally suited…
Among the big cats,
only the tiger and jaguar
are strong swimmers…
Tigers are often found bathing in ponds,
lakes, and rivers.

Unlike other cats,
which tend to avoid water,
tigers actively seek it out.
During the extreme heat of the day,
they often cool off in pools.
Tigers are excellent swimmers,
able to swim up to four miles…
They can carry dead prey across lakes
Tigers are easy to recognise.
Like other big cats,
Tigers have a white spot
On the backs of their ears..
These spots, called ocelli,
Serve a social function,
By communicating
The animal's mental state
To conspecifics in the gloom
Of dense forest…Or in tall grass...
“Animals are visible reflections of our souls”.

January 22 – 2011

Researched: by Zuzanna Musial
2011©Zuzanna Musial

“From the oyster to the eagle, from the swine to the tiger, all animals are to be found in men and each of them exists in some man, sometimes several at the time. Animals are nothing but the portrayal of our virtues and vices made manifest to our eyes, the visible reflections of our souls. God displays them to us to give us food for thought.”
~Victor Hugo quotes (French romantic Poet, Novelist and Dramatist, 1802-1885)

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