12 Things You Need To Know About Tigers
29th July is International Tiger Day, so we're giving lowdown on all things tiger. Read the full story at MTV.co.uk.
29th July is International Tiger Day, so we wanted to give you the lowdown on a few things you might not know about tigers. Just because.
Tigers Are Just Cats
First up, although they’re a member of the cat family, tigers cannot purr. And vice versa, unlike tigers, domestic cats, can’t roar.
They're Pretty Cool
A tiger’s stripes go right down to its skin - so a shaved tiger would still be stripey. Each tiger’s markings are as unique as a fingerprint - scientists can use their stripes to identify individual tigers in the wild.
Thought all cats hate water? Not tigers - they love water and are strong swimmers.
They're Cute, Cuddly And... Harmless?
Unlike what you might have seen in the movies, it’s incredible rare for a tiger to attack humans - they’re not naturally man-eaters.
They Live The Dream
Tigers are actually pretty lazy and spend most of their time snoozing - typically, around 18-20 hours of a tiger’s day is spent asleep or resting. SO LUCKY.
There's Not Many Left
As well as being the largest and most iconic of all the big cat species, tigers are also one of the most endangered. One hundred years ago, there were around 100,000 tigers in the world. The WWF estimates that there are now only around 3,900 left.
Let's Put That Into Perspective
According to the RSPCA, the UK has 8.5 million pet dogs and 7.4 million pet cats.
In the most recent census, 176,632 people in England and Wales recorded their religion as ‘Jedi Knight’. For every tiger left in the world, there are nearly 60 British people who pretended to be Jedi on the census.
Seriously, They're Endangered
There are over 5,000 different airlines in the world. Yep, more airlines than tigers too.
There’s a lady in Austria who spent over 25 years and €80,000 building up her 4,443-strong collection of garden gnomes. 4,443 gnomes. In one garden. And just 3,900 wild tigers in the world.
It Can't Be True?!
In fact, there are more tigers in captivity than in the wild.
They Might Even Become Extinct
Tigers are being threatened by poaching and loss of their habitat. The world’s remaining wild tigers could become extinct in just a few years if nothing is done.
There's Still Hope
Thankfully, there is still hope for these beautiful creatures. The WWF recently confirmed a reverse in this terrible decline - for the first time in conservation history. The charity is now working to double the number of tigers in the wild by the next Chinese year of the Tiger in 2022.
We hope the numbers of wild tigers continue to rise and that tigers are around for years to come!
Written by Melissa Hobson