Tigers (Panthera tigris) are a species of large feline. Tigers generally are orange (with white countershading), but recessive traits cause some other color phases, including brown-striped white and "golden tabby". These unusual colorations are much more common in fursonas than in actual wild tigers, however. A recessive gene exists in the Bengal subspecies which, if carried by both parents, can result in a white tiger (more properly known as chinchilla albinistic).
The striped pattern helps break up their form in long grass and makes it more difficult for prey to visually determine which way they are facing or if they are moving closer or further away. Interestingly the striped pattern exists on the skin of the tiger as well as in the fur,meaning that a shaved tiger will be camouflaged as well as a tiger with fur. The skin of a white tiger is a bluish colour, also complete with stripes. Stripes vary in width, pattern and number, and are like human fingerprints in that no two tigers are ever marked the same.
Tigers can adapt to virtually any climate, thus they can live in most areas. They are found naturally in India, Indochina, China and South East Asia, and can also be found in the far eastern areas of Russia.
The areas occupied by wild tigers have decreased from a historical standpoint due to hunting and human civilizations, but they are starting to reclaim lost territories again due to their protected status.
Portrayals of tigers in modern literature and the media have varied widely. In The Jungle Book, the Bengal tiger, Shere Khan, is depicted as the mortal enemy of the human Mowgli. At the other extreme areWinnie the Pooh's friend Tigger, and Hobbes from the comic strip Calvin and Hobbes. "Tony the Tiger" is also featured as a mascot on the cover of the popular cereal "Frosted Flakes" (known as "Frosties" in Europe).
Fictional tiger charactersEdit
- Tonya DeFault (Andorozon)
- Tigress (Kung Fu Panda )
- El Jefe (Sly Cooper)
- Tiger Claw (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
- Jian the Tiger (Archie's Sonic the Hedgehog)
- Tyrannicus (Animalia)
- White Tigers on Tiger Territory website. Retrieved June 16, 2011
- Skin and Coat 2 on Tiger Territory website. Retrieved June 16, 2011
- Skin and Coat on Tiger Territory website. Retrieved June 16, 2011
- National Animal Panthera tigris, Tiger is the national animal of India, Govt. of India website,
- ISBN 0517180936. Summers, Montague (1966). The Werewolf. University Books, 21.