Wild cats are graceful and beautiful predators. There are legends about their independence and vitality.
At the same time, no matter what kind you look, it is always clear that in front of you are feline. And this is one of the main features of these animals - monomorphism, speaking scientifically. They differ only in size and color. Moreover, sexual dimorphism is also absent in color, that is, males and females do not differ either in hairline features or in color.
Scientists note that spots are the most primary type of animal coloration.
"If we look at all 39 species, then two-thirds will have a spotty color. For some, only cubs have spots, for example, a lion and cougar, but later they disappear and the animals become monophonic," said the deputy director of the Institute of Ecological Problems and Evolution named after A.N.Severtsov of the Russian Academy of Sciences Sergey Naydenko.
Mustachioed - Striped
The tiger is the only "purely striped" feline. This is a tropical species that formed in southeast Asia, in an open area with tall grass. Although it seems to the inhabitants of the middle strip that this is a very bright predator, in fact, vertical stripes among the trunks and branches of trees make it practically invisible, said Ekaterina Blydchenko, senior researcher at the FSUE “Land of the Leopard”, a zoologist at the center for the rehabilitation of tigers and other rare animals (MPOO) "Center" Tiger ").
Black stripes interspersed with red, create a good protective color. Despite the presence of a bright color in the color, the tiger blends perfectly with the surrounding conditions, especially in the autumn forest, as well as in the summer in dense thickets.
Color helps when he tries to sneak up on the victim. It’s hard to find a tiger in the forest; moreover, it moves very carefully, smoothly and slowly.
Since tigers are not capable of long-term pursuit of prey, they have to rely solely on masking color. Thanks to him, the predator can get as close to prey as possible. Therefore, the success of hunting is directly related to how close the tiger can get to the victim.
Big cats lurk before an attack or in danger, dissolving in the forest, where the play of light and shadow predominates. Vertical stripes of a tiger help to be unnoticed among tree trunks and grass.
Other types of cats are either spotted or mixed - spots with stripes. Perhaps this is due to the fact that the tigers were first separated from the common ancestor of the genus panther (earlier than the leopard, jaguar and lion). And just such a color was optimal for those conditions: tropical forests, river floodplains, tall grass, shady taiga forests.
The origin of the tiger breed
Tiger cats are a genus that includes various breeds. In nature, these are predators.
Despite their Latin name (Leopardus), they are not relatives of leopards.
All members of the genus in the wild live in Central and South America. The exact date of origin is unknown, but these representatives of the Feline family have existed for a very long time.
For reference! Until recently, all animals of the genus were purebred, but hybrid forms are now being bred.
A toyger is a miniature tiger cat. No wonder the translation of the breed name from English is a toy tiger. Among all representatives of tiger cats, this is the most pronounced color.
For reference! The cost of Tiger kittens is very high, as they are considered exclusive.
In some nurseries, queues are formed to receive purebred Toygers.
- a large powerful body, the mass of an adult animal reaches 8 kg,
- paws are short,
- the tail is thin and long
- powerful neck:
- large bright blue eyes
- short soft coat.
The color of the stripes varies - it can be black, yellow and brown. The tip of the tail and legs are always black. The character of the cat is soft and calm, she loves care and attention. Kittens are playful, but adult animals are calm, serious and very loyal. They are distinguished by their love for children.
These cats live long enough - up to 20 years.
Interesting! Toigers not only meow, but also make other sounds like bird tweets.
Asian Tabby has the following characteristics:
- cat size up to 7 kg,
- the body is powerful, strong, with well-developed muscles,
- the tail is thin, straight, long, ends with a brush,
- the head is short, dense, with large almond-shaped or rounded yellow eyes (shades of color can vary greatly, amber color is especially mesmerizing),
- the coat is thin and soft with a variety of colors.
The color of the coat varies, but has a special attractive pattern that combines patterns of spots and stripes.
Depending on the pattern, they distinguish:
- spotted Tabby - spots of various sizes and colors are scattered across her body,
- marble Tabby - the color of the skin resembles marble with its unusual, intricate combination of spots and lines,
- Tiger Tabby - a real tigress with the corresponding stripes on a light skin,
- ticked - plain wool, but each hair is dyed in two colors at once - light at the base and dark at the top.
Asian Tiger Tabby
Bengal cat is a rare breed, which, however, is of artificial origin. Her parents were a leopard cat and domestic cats.
The breed was officially registered in 1983, 20 years after its breeding. During the work on Bengal cats, leopard spots were randomly scattered throughout the body, and their color may vary.
The main colors of the spots are black and brown, but there can be any other shades. Bengal cats - the breed is quite rare, but it is found more often than cats with a tiger color - Toyger.
These pussies are not afraid of water, on the contrary, sometimes they can organize mini-swims in the pool or bathroom. And another interesting feature: before drinking water from a bowl, they pass a foot on its surface, as if driving away the mud.
It is interesting! Bengals do not meow, but make rare short sounds, which are a cross between meow and growl.
This tiger cat still exists in the wild. Oncilla is larger in comparison with domestic representatives of the genus, but against the background of wild relatives it is the smallest.
- short yellow-gray striped wool
- habitat - humid tropics,
- adult oncilla is indistinguishable from a jaguar kitten by external signs.
Due to its resemblance to a jaguar, as well as the presence of beautiful soft hair, this breed is on the verge of extinction. Poachers constantly hunt for a wild tiger cat. Hunting them under the strictest ban. Her character is very wayward, so keeping a beauty at home is not recommended.
Interesting! Oncilla is not only not afraid of water, but also swims beautifully.
Other breeds of tiger cats are less common. These are such breeds of cat tigers as:
- Savannah is a hybrid registered in 2001. A large, massive cat, characterized by a well-developed intelligence. Their loyalty is comparable to that of a dog. The color is varied, the cat is very mobile, and therefore, it is better to keep her in a private house with the ability to run in the yard.
- Munchkin - the standard body length, but the legs are much shorter than the rest of the cats. Breeders are pleased that the short-foot gene is dominant. The color is mostly striped, but there are spotty options.
- Siberian tiger cat is one of the most popular in Russia, due to its fluffiness, low cost, loyalty, high life expectancy. Very effective, long-haired, with dark stripes on a different background (usually grayish or brown), the breast is light.
- British tiger is a variation of the British with tabby coloring. There are several color options - marble with dark stripes and spots on a gray background, whiskas - silver color with dark stripes, red color with brown stripes.
- Scottish brindle - one of the options for the color of the Scottish cat. The more pronounced the stripes and spots, the more it looks like tiger cats.
Care for tiger cats
Tiger cats are not aggressive, but you must always remember their origin and understand that it is unlikely that they can completely re-educate a wild pet.
A cute, affectionate fluffy cat, like a tiger, will never be. These animals cannot be called sociable, in the daytime they prefer to relax in a secluded place, and at night they show a peak of activity. This is a great option for owners who are regularly employed at work. At night, tiger beauties run, have fun, do their feline business.
Some breeders contain these expensive cats in special enclosures, where conditions are recreated, as close as possible to the real range of their habitat.
Attention! One of the advantages of wild origin is that these cats are not particularly picky about their care.
It is important to provide them with the opportunity of full movement and a lot of space for the game. Therefore, keeping them in a cramped apartment will not work, the best option is a private house with a yard.
Providing the necessary wholesome and varied diet is also an important part of caring for tiger cats. But despite the fact that they are called that way, love and affection can manifest itself if all these conditions are met.
Caring for the soft, smooth hair of tiger cats is quite pleasant. In the molting season, regular combing is necessary; on the remaining days, it is enough to remove the wool with a wet palm.
Siberian Tiger Cat
It is not enough to feed a tiger cat with dry food, even of a premium class, food should include daily:
- lean meat (best fresh beef),
- complex of vitamins and minerals.
Feed the cat once a day. Once a week a full fasting day is arranged. In order for the animal to remain healthy, proper nutrition, care and regular examinations at the veterinarian are necessary.
Features of castration and sterilization
Castration and sterilization of tiger cats is carried out in the same way as similar procedures in representatives of other breeds.
Males are neutered at the age of 6 months to a year, cats are sterilized later - from 10 to 14 months. It is possible to perform the procedure at other times, but you need to consult a veterinarian about this in each case.
After the operation, the cats should be taken care of by organizing a place for them where they can safely move away from anesthesia. It should be warm with a soft litter. Bowls of food and water must always be nearby.
It is not worth disturbing the animal during this period, but you need to look after them regularly, since severe vomiting is likely after anesthesia.
What colors are the most popular and fashionable
The most expensive breed of tiger cats is Toyger. Prices for castrated or sterilized animals reach 200 thousand rubles. For this money, kittens are sold with a pedigree and only in specialized nurseries.
A Bengal cat with a pedigree will cost the owner about 50 thousand rubles. A lop-eared Scottish cat costs a little cheaper - from 25 thousand rubles. She attracts breeders with her affectionate and good-natured disposition.
Does color change with age? The tiger color of purebred representatives of the breed with a good pedigree does not change.
Tiger cats are a great choice for those who want to show their financial viability, as these are mostly elite cats. Also, such cats are suitable for lovers and lovers of freedom. In this case, the character of the pet will fully correspond to the character of the owner. These animals are faithful and loyal, but you need to be able to handle them. Most of them get along well with children, but only after some period of adaptation.
The ancestors of the cat were Kenyan forest cats. The name of the breed comes from the place of discovery: the so-called forest area in eastern Kenya (Africa).
The breed is recognized by several felinological organizations.
The shape of the head is sokoke wedge-shaped, the body is slim and graceful. The muzzle is narrow. The ears are large compared to the head. Short wool with a marble pattern on a dark background. Paws are long, front shorter than hind. Weight - 5 kg.
Sokoke - active animals with a good, but independent disposition.Get along with animals and people. Very loyal to the owner, but can be alone in peace.
A rare species and for this reason expensive. Obtained by crossing a domestic cat and a wild African serval.
The body size of the animal is 135 cm in length and 60 cm in the withers. The body is muscular, but the gait is graceful. Paws are long. The ears are large compared to the head, the eyes are expressive green or yellow.
The coat is short and coarse with spots, reminiscent of a leopard. The color of the spots is brown or black.
By nature, hunters are jumping and agile. Amenable to training, sociable, attached to the owner. With age, wild roots appear brighter.
An adult beast must be kept in an aviary and walked.
Weight - 15 kg. Lives for 20 years.
Spotted cats with short hair.On the face there is a characteristic pattern - above the eyes of the strip in the form of the letter M, and to the back of the head there is a W-shaped pattern. The eyes are large, green, almond-shaped, circled in black.
The body is muscular, but graceful. The head is wedge-shaped with large ears wide apart. The wool is covered with spots. Coat color: gray, smoky and bronze.
They have an energetic character. By nature, hunters. They are loyal to the owner, silent. Get along with animals and children.
Weight - 5 kg. They live 15 years.
The body of the cat is large. Paws are long. The color of the coat is similar to a leopard. In humans, asher cats do not cause allergies.
The character is calm, but prone to curiosity. Every day the animal needs to walk on a leash. May show aggression.
Prone to digestive problems, therefore, special nutrition is necessary.
Weight - 15 kg. Lives about 20 years.
How to care
Care for tiger cats is the same as for the rest of the breeds. You need to feed them in a balanced way.
The basis of the diet should be raw meat, it is desirable to alternate between different types: veal, chicken, beef.
You can also feed raw sea fish and boiled river. Vitamins and mineral supplements should be present in the diet. If fed with industrial feeds, then only premium.
Once a week, remove excess hair with a brush with natural bristles and clean the ears of the pet. Swimming once a month.
Clipping is done once a week with special scissors. Mandatory visits to the veterinarian (vaccination, deworming).
Cats of tiger color are cleanliness and for this reason it is necessary to clean their tray as regularly as possible. As a filler, wood chips are suitable. It is better to choose a tray with high edges to avoid spilling of the filler during instillation.
Animals are mobile and daily walks are useful to them. It is good if there is a special climbing complex at home. The higher it is, the better.
Approximate prices for tiger kittens
Tiger kittens are sold in nurseries. Rates vary by breed.
|Toyger||60,000. For breeding, they cost 200,000 rubles, as they are imported from foreign nurseries|
About the film
The Amur tiger is the largest and strongest in the world.But it was just recently that he was threatened with complete extermination. Poachers are hunting him to sell them on the other side of the border for tens of thousands of dollars. The Chinese use tigers to make medical potions. In recent years, our state has taken serious measures to save an endangered predator. But how effective are they? Do they give a result?
A group of Russians went to the Amur taiga to determine how many individuals were still left, whether their population was increasing, to study the tiger’s habits, and also to understand what else we had to do to save this amazing animal. Together with scientists, the “tiger path” was a special NTV correspondent Alexei Pobortsev. Did he manage to meet a tiger in the Amur taiga and how did this meeting end?
Alexey Pobortsev, author of the film: “It was an amazing expedition. Together with scientists, our film crew spent many days and nights in the taiga, where there are no ordinary people, only wild animals and poachers. But the tiger is not easy to meet. The habitat of only one individual is hundreds, if not thousands of kilometers. But still we managed to find him. Gorgeous huge tabby cat. Who knows while we were looking for her, maybe she was watching us? These predators are extremely cautious and cunning. I do not know. But we managed to find out and shoot what we wanted. ”
A person who stumbled upon the tracks of a tiger for the first time - whether on a small-footed country road in northern Sikhote-Alin, on a barely sprinkled forest log near Ussuriysk, on a wet sandy island in the middle of the Gryaznaya River - is involuntarily thrilled. The look of the tiger paw prints tells us, descendants of Australopithecus and Sinanthropus, that a higher power passed here that could destroy our microcosm, ego, libido in one second - the whole bunch of colorful mania, phobias and complexes called modern man.
Tiger grazing on soft ground.
And this power lurked somewhere nearby.
In addition, the tiger footprint - especially if it is imprinted on a soft and shallow substrate like freshly fallen snow - is very beautiful. In shape, it resembles a giant flower. When you look closely, you pay attention that it is not squeezed out, but as if “traced” on snow or soil. And it is drawn very carefully, I would even say - carefully. In general, when looking at tiger tracks, one gets the impression that this beast does not step a step without thinking.
Famous researcher of Amur tigers V. Yudin believes that the width of the front paw of an adult male ranges from ten to eleven and a half centimeters and only in exceptional cases reaches large sizes. For a female, these same parameters range from nine to nine and a half centimeters. The scientist claims that individuals, the width of the front legs of which varies between eight and ten and a half centimeters, make up the largest group in the population, its “middle class”. In particular, it includes young males and adult females without tiger cubs. I note that a similar pattern is observed in bears.
But one thing is the size of the paws, and another is their prints on snow or sand. In order to feel the difference, I advise the beginning naturalist to conduct such an experiment - make a fingerprint with a thimble on it several prints on sprinkled sugar. You will immediately get an idea of what kind of errors trackers have to deal with. Therefore, it is not surprising that in field studies the size of the tiger tracks, and accordingly the sizes of the animals themselves, are constantly overestimated.
Tiger footprint measurements.
When walking calmly in deep snow, the imprint of the hind paw of the tiger constantly falls over the imprint of the front paw, that is, in the jargon of the Far Eastern trackers, it is “covered”. When moving along powdered ice and slippery roads, the tiger spreads its fingers and releases its claws for greater stability.
According to P. Oshmarin and D. Pikunov, in soft snow, a calmly walking tiger always leaves hairs and dragged, that is, it moves as if with sloth. But when the beast hunts, its gait changes abruptly: the tread becomes more confident, the track becomes narrower, the wires and drags disappear, the imprint of the hind paw definitely falls into the imprint of the front. The length of the predator’s step immediately after detecting prey and throughout the approach to it and even before the throw itself does not change and amounts to sixty to seventy centimeters - approximately as in an adult.
The trail of man and the trail of a tiger.
Having discovered the prey, the tiger falls to the ground - “lies”, hiding the beast, and several lodges appear in the snow. It is believed that at this time the hidden predator “by ear” determines the position of its prey. When approaching it, the tiger prefers to walk in the soft snow, blowing (to places from where the wind blew the snow), stones, trunks of fallen trees, mounds.
One peculiarity characteristic of the Far Eastern taiga should be noted. In the oak forests of the Ussuri Territory (I mean pure oak trees with a slight admixture of other species), there is practically no grass cover. It is replaced by loose leaves, and what kind of leaves are thick, dry, oak leaves twisted into waffle cones! Even a cat cannot move silently on this “pillow”, therefore, in conditions of “rattling”, as local hunters put it, taiga animals are forced to do all sorts of tricks when approaching their prey. Deciduous litter creates much more problems for predators than snow, and I will talk about this in detail when describing the hunting of our striped heroes.
Let us return to how the pathfinder, using fingerprints on the ground, reconstructs the picture of a tiger attack on prey.
Having seen the victim, the beast goes right at it with the usual step, and this movement without stopping goes into a throw, which, as it is believed, begins at the moment when the object of the attack “strains” from its place and tries to escape. During the throw, the tiger moves at a gallop and at the same time very skillfully adapts to the terrain, choosing a solid base for shocks and avoiding loose snow, so the track often turns out to be zigzag. By the same P. Oshmarin and D. Pikunov, it was estimated that the tiger made seventeen jumps when throwing over a Manchurian deer located sixty meters higher on the slope. Only three times his paws fell into deep snow, and the remaining touches fell on a solid base suitable for a subsequent push - on a clearing, an old manchurian lying, protruding tree roots. The same scientists found that in a swift throw the tiger jumps are uneven in size. At first, their length is from one and a half to two and a half meters, in the middle - three - three and a half meters, and the final ones in case of success rarely exceed four - four and a half meters. On the Manchurian deer, the tiger rushes from a greater distance than onto the wild boar, because the wild boar is much more “responsive” to the deer and can develop much faster speed from the place. If the attack is unsuccessful, the tiger gradually slows down the pace of pursuit and moves on to the usual step, and sometimes lays on its side and rests for a while before proceeding with a new search.
Traces of a tiger on the outskirts of the village of Shumny.
During normal crossings, the tiger moves almost in a straight line, ignoring the hills and ravines. A broken track with short-time lying on the snow indicates that the predator was hunting. The beds, on which the tiger rests for a long time, are arranged by them in the same places near permanent paths. Usually they do not have a lining, are closed on top and are under eversion, under the trunk of a large fallen tree or in a quiet place under a rock. Sometimes the beast arranges a laying in a boar’s gan, having previously crushed its former owner and dragged the corpse inside.
After the tiger leaves the remains of its prey, it lies down every two to five hundred meters. Its daily crossings at such a time, called the saturation period by specialists, are only five, a maximum of ten kilometers. Predator activity increases on the second or third day. He rests less and less. But when a pathfinder finds a lot of short-term lodges on a short stretch of the path, he needs to be very careful - this means that the beast hunts, looks out and listens for the next victim!
When exploring the territory, the tiger, like most other large predators, adheres to a certain pattern of "rounds". They are attached to places where a large beast is kept and where, no less important, it is easy to obtain, to the survey points where a predator can view large areas, and to areas where it is easy for him to move in winter - forest roads, snowmobile paths and to human paths. Walks are made with a fairly predictable frequency, which allows the hunter or researcher to “guess” the timing of the appearance of the beast on a particular site of land.
"Tags" of tigers
Sometimes a tiger, for no apparent reason, approaches a separate tree, an eversion or a stone, treads near it and urinates. The mark is left in a very colorful way - the tiger turns to the object to be sprinkled with a croup, lifts its tail vertically and emits a stream of acutely smelling urine at the target point, which envelops everything around with a cloud, including the striped predator itself. That is why tigers also have that sharp cat smell, which is noted by almost all researchers.
Sometimes animals, right on their path, claw off part of the soil or turf, leaving the so-called scratches, and near the places of long-term rest and near the lair choose some trees - most often dead wood - about which claws sharpen. This is a peculiar manifestation of the "animal language" - a superficially studied and described phenomenon, to the inner essence of which no one has yet reached.
Many researchers believe that such labels serve to indicate the boundaries of individual sites, but I will allow myself to doubt it. The vast majority of such trees, stones or logs are not located at the edges of the plots, but at the intersections of roads and paths, where the paths of all forest inhabitants passing through the given area are most likely to intersect. According to the information provided by A. Yudakov and I. Nikolaev, the marking activity of large cats sharply, in two - two and a half times, increases during estrus. In addition, animals have the ability to mark the most prominent or unusual objects in their path - a recently abandoned tractor skeleton, a log dropped by lumberjacks.
Scratching claws on the bark of a tree - a combination of pleasant with useful.
The tiger leaves a "name" mark.
In this regard, I recall a forest of ordinary pine trees planted by foresters on the Shufansky plateau, which is not found in its natural form on the territory of the Ussuri Territory. Almost every tree was marked there, with almost all the animals that lived in the immediate vicinity, from sika deer and wild boars to tigers and leopards. So we still have to solve the mystery of animal marks ...
How much does a tiger walk per day? Tiger plots
At the beginning of the 20th century, with the light hand of N. Baykov, the Amur tiger was credited with the ability to make huge transitions. “In search of prey, he quickly travels long distances, sometimes up to eighty and one hundred kilometers a day,” the researcher said. However, all subsequent naturalists came to the conclusion that "sturgeon should be cut at least twice."
Lev Kaplanov, who laid the foundation for modern tiger research in the Far East, found that the length of the distance covered by the Amur tiger in a day can be from twenty to fifty kilometers. But later it turned out that these figures are too high. A. Yudakov and I. Nikolaev, as a result of long-term observations in the winter taiga, specified that the average daily course of the male is nine to ten kilometers, and the maximum did not exceed forty-one kilometers. For a tigress, similar values are seven to eight and twenty-two kilometers, respectively.
Southern Sikhote Alin is a tiger country.
The tigers of the Ussuri taiga prefer to lay their routes along the southern slopes of the hills, especially along the ridges, avoiding steep climbs and multi-snowy areas. And the tiger’s favorite routes of travel are human paths and forest roads. For which animals are paid by life ...
The size of an individual tiger plot directly depends on how many animals inhabit these lands. However, this applies only to those tigers that lead a relatively sedentary lifestyle - resident males who play the role of land owners and have cubs of females. In the tropics, for example India, a section of an adult tigress can cover an area of one hundred square kilometers. In the Far East, where nature is much poorer, tiger lands and the distances they cover are much larger. In the early 1970s, A. Yudakov and I. Nikolayev established that the approximate size of the “master” tiger in the Ussuri taiga is about twenty-five kilometers long and thirty kilometers wide. This corresponds to the area of Domodedovo or Pushkin district of the Moscow region.
The size of the habitats of females is usually half that size, but at the same time, a mother with a brood can stay on a more limited territory. So, in the winter of 1970/71, a tigress growing up kittens, which A. Yudakov and I. Nikolaev called the “mistress,” hunted in sixty square kilometers of land, and from January 1972 to April 1973 she lived with another brood on the site no more than fifteen square kilometers, not exceeding the area of the Moscow region of Kuntsevo. When the cubs grew up, the female began to walk much wider, and her section grew to one hundred square kilometers, which is approximately equal to the area of the South-Western administrative district of Moscow, and the total size of the entire territory she develops was about three hundred or four hundred square kilometers. Subsequently, these data were clarified by American researchers who used radio collars to track the movements of Amur tigers, but in general, the results of Soviet naturalists obtained through investigations did not undergo significant changes. True, overseas scientists in the first publications “forgot” to refer to their predecessors ...
The male tiger travels nine to ten kilometers per day.
Tiger plots are used unevenly. There are places in them where a predator comes, maybe once or twice in life, or even does not visit at all: these are dense spruce forests in which there are relatively few animals, vast stone peaks of mountains - the so-called char. At the same time, the “rounds” of the tiger are tied both to places of “good hunting” and to the most convenient fords, river crossings, and passes.
A. Petrov, one of the best animal animal operators in Russia, told me how he, in order to determine the most convenient places for hiding places (sheds) for filming the beast, calculated the routes of large males - owners of the sites. As a result of many days of studying the tracks and analyzing the transitions, two points were found at which the tiger appeared every five to seven days, and unique shots were taken at these ripples and the only, as far as I know, wild Amur tiger was shot in natural conditions.
In addition to animals constantly living in one territory or another, in the taiga there are many young and medium-sized tigers from the "middle class" who have not yet managed to acquire their own lands. Some of them, due to their youth, lack of experience, lack of strength or physical injuries, cannot "wedge" between the sites of their brothers.They tend to go very far from their father’s home and appear from time to time thousands of kilometers from their main area - either on Zeya, then on the left bank of the Amur, or even under Chita, Irkutsk or in eastern Yakutia. And sometimes they die in battles with stronger permanent owners of tiger latifundia - resident males ...
In the southern latitudes, the size of the female habitat is small. In the Panna Nature Reserve in northern India, tigresses occupy approximately twenty-five square kilometers, while male tigers account for two to two hundred and fifty. On the territory of Nepal, which is considered a "paradise for tigers", the average territory of the male is seventy, and the females are twenty-two square kilometers. Thus, the real density of settlement of these predators in the territory of Southeast Asia is very high, moreover, tigers coexist here with a huge number of people, exceeding the number of giant cats by hundreds, if not thousands of times.
But in any case, we must remember that adult tigers occupy, although significant, but limited land. And for prolonged vagrancy they can be forced only by a nurse or large-scale natural disasters.
Tigers and ... tigers
Do tigers create long-term families? How long do cubs live with their mother? How peacefully do tigers get along in nature?
Apparently, tigers still do not form permanent pairs. One female can have the same partner for several techek (especially if they live in the same territory), but he does not go with his girlfriend, except for the mating period. Therefore, talking about constant pairs with tigers is not worth it. In human language, here we have a case of forced cohabitation.
Male tigers are not very fond of each other: in violation of the boundaries of the site and close encounters between them, fights are possible, which sometimes end in the death of one of the participants.
Tigers-lovers ... PHOTO IGOR AK. [email protected]
Here is how A. Yudakov and I. Nikolaev describe the duel restored between the tracks between the male resident, whom they called “Mighty”, and a stray tiger with the characteristic nickname “Lazy” assigned to him:
“The meeting of tigers took place on a hillside, on the path of wild boars. About seventy meters “Mighty” pressed “Lazy” back along the path, on the sides of which there were continuous prints of torsos and tails. Then, pushing the “Lazy” onto a small, tree-free plot, the “Mighty” knocked him off the trail. Here, at a distance of twenty meters, a strip of completely knocked down bloodied snow stretched, shreds of wool remained on the bushes. The mortally wounded “Lazy” crossed over a knotted logging tree hidden by snow, and the prevailing “Mighty” turned around and went up to the top of this valinea and headed back in its tracks. ”
The wounded tiger died long and painfully. He still moved a kilometer from the place of the fight, literally pouring blood on his way.
The end came, according to scientists, only twelve days later, which he lay in almost the same place.
The most violent clashes between predators occur, naturally, at a time when the tigress "comes into estrus" and representatives of the opposite sex begin to be interested in it ...
The first to report the death of a tiger during a fight for possessing a female was told by N. M. Przhevalsky. In the winter of 1869, hunters on the Mangugay River (now Barabashevka) found a place for such a fight and a torn young male.
About the bloody battle between male tigers tells N. Baykov:
“When I woke up one day from the cold, I heard the voice of some beast not far away, it came from below, from the side of the opposite slope of the shaft. At first I took him for the voice of the red wolf, but soon another, louder and mightier joined him. Awakened by me, Dolgikh sat by the fire and began to listen. The voices of animals at times intensified and turned into a roar and a thundering cough, sometimes they resembled the cry of fighting cats.
... Judging by the strength of the sound and the number of voices, there were at least four tigers, between them one of colossal size, he roared rarely, but loudly and abruptly, after his voice the voices of the others were heard, less thick and formidable ...
The roar of predators intermittently lasted about an hour. At first he made a strong impression on us, we were even afraid of the attack of the beast, but later, when we got used to it, we began to treat him indifferently, although the loaded rifles were not let out of our hands. Together with the squeal and the roar of animals, fuss was heard, the crackle of bushes and deadwood at the site of the battle.
... and even enemy tigers.
... On the side of the mountain, half a mile from our camp, we found fresh traces of two tigers, in many places the snow was completely trampled and melted to the ground in places where the animals lay.
Blood was visible everywhere, even on a single bench there was a small puddle of hers, apparently flowed from the left paw of the beast.
Obviously, there was a fight between males over a female. ”
V. Yudin and I. Nikolaev describe six cases of death of cubs from fangs of male tigers. For example, on February 26, 1988, in an partisan district of Primorsky Krai, an adult male killed and ate a rather large tiger cub. The battle on the road seemed to be short-lived. Mortal wounds were inflicted on the neck and front of the body of a young beast. There is no reason to associate this case of cannibalism with the lack of food, since the number of ungulates in these places was quite high.
Animals, especially predatory ones, create a very cruel world for themselves. S. Kucherenko, however, according to the hunters, claims that there are cases when the male immediately after the birth of the kittens delivers the prey crushed by the prey to the lair ...
When analyzing the lifestyle of the modern tiger and leopard in the Far East, I would like to call them "cave". Caves, rocky niches, and generally shelters in stones can include a significant number of their temporary and permanent dens. To call the Amur or, as it was called before, the Manchu (Ussuri), the tiger “cave” was suggested, based on the characteristics of its main shelters, such experts of the Far Eastern nature as N. Baykov and V. Arsenyev.
Caves are the favorite shelter of the giant cats of the Ussuri taiga.
Niches under the stones are comfortable places to relax.
In fact, tigers try to use not only stone niches and awnings, which are commonly called caves, but also trunks of fallen trees, gaps between roots and spreading bushes as a lair. In the Ussuri taiga, for long-term and permanent resting places, they choose "overview" places - on rocky ledges, individual stones, "capes" above the river valleys. Often animals lie on the hogs of wild boars. Willingly use tigers and voids under fallen trees. Striped cats visit such shelters many times, they are a kind of milestones at their crossings, as evidenced by the observations of A. Yudakov and I. Nikolaev. And in the river valleys of Central Asia, says A. Sludsky, the outskirts of vast reed beds adjacent to tugai or open glades served as places of daytime beds.
The "Nest" is arranged by a tigress in an area full of wild boars and other ungulates. A female can use the same den for many years in a row. If she dies, then quite often another female takes this place. L. Kaplanov claims that when the cubs grow up and begin to follow their mother, she, leaving the game, leaves them temporarily lying, and she hunts nearby, at a distance of no more than half a kilometer, and she behaves so quietly that she does not frighten the prey, which is kept next to the tiger family.
But in any case, the tiger’s den is more of a temporary refuge than a multi-month (and even more so many years) place of constant stops and rest.
Genre: Nature & Animals, Home & Family
Current page: 7 (total of the book is 30 pages)
James Fraser, in his monumental work The Golden Branch, speaks of the traditional belief in the transition to a person of the physical and moral properties of an animal that occurs when his body is eaten, and at the same time he points to the tiger as one of the subjects of such eating:
“The Miri people living in Assam extol tiger meat as food that gives men strength and courage. But it is not suitable for women, having tasted it, they would become too decisive. In Korea, tiger bones, as a means of instilling valor, are valued above leopard bones. In order to gain courage and ferocity, a Chinese man living in Seoul bought and ate a whole tiger. ”
Tigers amulets under a cradle. The imperial palace in Shenyang, Manchuria.
In many countries, parts of the tiger body were used not only as medicine, but also as amulets.
N. Baykov says:
“The tiger claw is worn like an amulet and, according to legend, protects the wearer from an evil person and an evil eye. The bones of the tiger fingers of the front paw bring good luck in every business, no matter how dangerous and risky it may be. A dried tiger eye helps to see what is hidden from the human eye. Tiger skin destroys the evil will, acting from the outside, and soothes the nerves of the person lying on it. There could be many such superstitions about the influence of the tiger on humans, but it would take a whole volume. All these beliefs indicate only the charm and significance that the predator used, and the role that he played in the life and worldview of the peoples of southern and eastern Asia. "
C. Mayer writes about how the tiger was cut in Sumatra:
“The tiger mustache was carefully pulled out. They are sold to Malay and Chinese doctors, who burn them and use ashes as medicine. The insides are also preserved: they are dried, and the Chinese consider them a good medicine, they take their teeth on amulets.
The natives had their own order of how to share the booty. Everything turned out quite friendly. I took claws for myself, there is always a sale for them: superstitious people in Europe and Asia use them as talismans. Anyone with a tiger claw hanging on a watch chain can be calm that he is safe from troubles!
... But one enterprising Malay found one ear intact. He cut it off. Abdul told me that although he doesn’t trust all the talismans, one thing is undoubtedly true: if the ear of such a fierce tiger is dried and worn like an amulet on a belt, then no living tiger dares to attack a person who has such reliable protection. ”
To this day, people in Asia believe that particles of the body of a tiger cure a good half of all human diseases.
Modern medicine from the tiger body.
The tiger is still very much appreciated in the Far Eastern folk medicine. Doctors used literally the whole body of this cat for their needs. First of all, of course, meat, which supposedly helps the human digestive organs, especially the spleen and stomach, and also improves the so-called “ki” energy (whale. "Qi").
Koreans believed that tiger claws normalized the cardiovascular system. Used them to treat gangrene.
The molars of the tiger were used for the treatment of skin diseases of the scrotum. The teeth were heated on fire and pulverized. This medicine was also given to those patients who have poor stomach and spleen function, “fire is burning under the spoon”, and those who feel vomiting and nausea after eating.
Koreans endowed tiger bones with antipyretic and anti-inflammatory properties. They treated rheumatism, arthritis. It was believed that they help a person to strengthen the skeleton and muscles, they treated sports injuries. A patient with weak kidneys and liver, “who no longer have legs from the weakness of these organs,” was also treated with tiger bones. They were also used to treat a strong heartbeat, epilepsy, fainting in young children. “Bloody diarrhea, which does not stop for a long time and leads to the gradual withdrawal of the“ ki ”from the body,” was also a disease that was healed with external ointments infused on tiger bones. At one time, it was proposed to use eight to thirty grams of the predator's bone tissue.
In arthritis, tiger leg muscles were used as a treatment. His kidneys treated heat and sore throat in children. The eyes of the tiger were endowed with the property of "clear vision", they removed the clouding of the cornea. The same remedy also acted against "fear with a strong heartbeat in infants." Koreans believed that tiger fat helps with hemorrhoidal bleeding and vomiting. They also lubricated acne, ulcers and large spots on the head of children. The tiger gallbladder healed anxiety and childhood fainting. In case of falls, bruises, beatings, from which the victim “is on the verge of death and cannot eat”, the use of the tiger gall bladder, according to folk healers, contributes to the rapid disappearance of bruising and a speedy recovery.
For centuries, natural medicine was the only remedy that a Korean could count on in case of illness. Her experience is interesting, but it was far from being as effective as it seems to us now - it was not for nothing that at the beginning of the 20th century the average Korean lived only to twenty-eight to thirty years.
Tiger on the calendar and astrology
According to the Buddhist calendar associated with the zodiac signs, once on New Year's Day, Buddha called all the animals of the world. He promised that those who come to him to express their respect will be endowed with gifts and will receive a mark of distinction and honor for the year, which will henceforth be called by their name. But the animals were not in a hurry to come to the call. As a result, they gathered only twelve. They arrived in the following order: mouse, buffalo, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and boar. Having been "possessed" by year, the animals conveyed their typical traits to them. According to Japanese beliefs, people born in the corresponding period of the twelve-year cycle also acquire the characteristic features of their “patron”. In addition, in China, months have been consistently associated with a rat, an ox, a tiger, a hare, a dragon, a snake, a horse, a sheep, a monkey, a rooster, a dog and a pig (in the version of Tibet and Mongolia - with a mouse, a cow, a tiger, a hare, a dragon , a snake, a horse, a sheep, a monkey, a rooster, a dog, a pig).
Hieroglyph denoting a tiger.
According to this concept, the Tiger personifying the power of the earth is sensitive, emotional, capable of deep reflection, strong love. Usually he is respected, but often conflicts with older ones by age or position. He is usually rated higher than he deserves. The tiger can back down before making an important decision until the moment when it is getting late. Limited, he does not trust anyone. The tiger is courageous and persistent, but at the same time it is selfish, stubborn, and not always trustworthy. In Asia, and especially in Japan, the year of the Tiger is considered favorable for the birth of a child, especially a boy. The Tiger Man in the family will help save the house from three misfortunes - thieves, fires and evil spirits.
Talisman for Tiger Man.
The first and third phases of the life of the Tiger are calm and light. In the second, he has to solve all kinds of problems, which, if not resolved, will make themselves felt in the third phase. Happy for the Tiger will be a love union with the Horse and the Dragon. The Tiger's mating relationship with the Buffalo, the Snake or the Monkey can very unfortunately develop.
Tiger: taboo, totem and werewolf
An interesting attitude to the tiger in the ancient culture of Hindustan - the ancient land, where these animals were at all times more numerous than anywhere else. At an early stage in the development of culture in the cities of the Indus Valley, images of tigers are common.
The artist Ivan Dunkai is the bearer of the national traditions of the Amur peoples.
However, it is not clear whether they are of a cult, totemic or purely decorative character. In the rest of India, figures and images of tigers were not in use until the accession of the Great Mughals.Perhaps this fact is explained by the fact that the image of this, without a doubt, the most dangerous predator of the jungle was taboo in the early Hindu pantheon, although subsequently traces of the ban ceased to be traced.
A tiger is a much lesser werewolf than a wolf. But he is personally acquainted with a much smaller number of people ... PHOTOS IGOR AK. [email protected]
A. Bram notes that “... in some regions of India, the tiger is considered a deity, and the inhabitants, speaking of it, use various descriptive names, but they do not name them,” unfortunately, without specifying which areas this observation relates to. About a similar attitude to the tiger among the peoples of Southeast Asia writes D. Fraser:
“... Another dangerous beast, which the primitive man prefers not to touch, so as not to arouse the hostility of his relatives, is a tiger. No persuasion can force a resident of Sumatra to injure a tiger or to capture him. He will do so only for self-defense or immediately after the tiger tore his companion or relative. It is known that when Europeans set traps on tigers, residents of neighboring villages came to these places at night and explained to the animals that the traps were not set by them and not with their consent. Residents of rolling hills near Rajam Hall (in Bengal) are disgusted at killing a tiger that did not kill any of their relatives. Otherwise, in order to kill the tiger, they arrange a hunt. With luck, they put bows and arrows on the carcass of a dead tiger and call upon God to witness that they killed this beast in revenge for the loss of a relative. Having committed this act of revenge, they vow not to attack the tigers anymore unless similar circumstances are presented. ”
According to the observation of E. Weinberger, “in Hindu iconography there was only the tiger on which the terrifying goddess-destroyer Durga sat. There is no mention of tigers in the Vidyakara Treasury (the famous anthology of Sanskrit poetry), where the life of an Indian is described in sufficient detail. ” According to the ancient Brahmin ritual, upon accession to the throne, the king stepped on the skin of a tiger and on a golden dish, he wore pigskin shoes on his feet. But among the primitive tribes inhabiting the jungle, the tigress personified a devouring and fruitful mother.
Tigers are Udege spirits.
Myths associated with the tiger cult of the Tibeto-Burmese are widespread. Already during the stratification of the patriarchal communities and the formation of the first Shu and Ba states in the western part of the East Asian region, legends arose about the descent of people from tigers and about the hero’s victory in the confrontation with the striped beast. A reflection of a respectful attitude to the tiger as a tribal totem is the ethnonym of one of the Indochina peoples - lakh, which means "Tiger eaten together."
Mystical worship of the tiger until recently was also developed among the small indigenous peoples of the Ussuri Territory - Nanais, Udege, and Basins.
The ritual "tiger dance" of the Nanais of the village of Gvasyugi. photo M. Kretschmar
According to N. Baykov, “the foreigners of Eastern Siberia, golds, Orochons and Tungus, as well as the wandering hunting tribes of Manchuria — solons and maneuvers, not only revere the tiger as a being of a higher order, but give him divine honors and offer him sacrifices in the form of their hunting booty. Even in recent times, if the tiger was especially impudent and killing people, they brought him a human sacrifice at the direction of the highest clergy - shamans. The doomed victim was tied to a tree standing by the tiger trail, and if it was a child, it was swaddled. If the beast accepted the sacrifice and ate it, this tree was considered sacred, and on it passers-by hunters left shreds of their clothes. Such trees, revered by the local population, have been preserved in the forest regions of Manchuria even now, and passers-by, from old memory, hang long patches of their clothes on their branches and branches. ”
I must say that even today, when communicating with representatives of international environmental organizations, local residents, competing for grants, often talk about the fact that among them the traditional attitude to the tiger as a mountain spirit and deity has been preserved. But, as the local hunting inspector Vladimir Shibnev, who participated in such a conversation, noted, “I seized from the Udege people” the first tiger skin that the Chinese tried to sell.
The ancient belief that a strong and dangerous beast can turn out to be a werewolf, like a wolf among the peoples of Eastern Europe, did not bypass the tiger. The werewolf tiger is found in the legends and beliefs of the inhabitants of Southeast Asia - in Thailand, Laos, Annam, Malaya and the islands of Indonesia. But this image, in terms of the frequency of mentions and the harmfulness attributed to it, cannot be compared with such classical werewolves as a wolf, fox, badger and West African leopard.
Tiger in ancient tradition
The tiger is not mentioned in the Bible. Also, the image of the tiger is absent in the early Greek sources. Nearch, the commander of Alexander the Great, brought to the headquarters of his king the tiger skin obtained in the Indus. Nearch could not see the beast itself, and the natives who presented this gift had the opportunity to give full play to their imagination.
Tiger attacking a horse. PICTURE E. DELACROI. 1825–1828
Of the Hindu tales, Hellenes most remembered that the tiger is a beast the size of a large horse, surpassing all other creatures with its strength and speed. At first glance, this suggests that, despite the widespread distribution of the Turanian tiger on the territory of the Achaemenid state, it was not very popular with the king of kings, and the Macedonian conquerors received the first evidence of the existence of the striped beast from India. Although, it is likely that the Greeks met with these animals during their constant service in the courts of the Persian kings.
The hunt for tigers and lions. PICTURE OF P. RUBENS. 1618
It is believed that the Greco-Roman civilization first encountered live tigers only in the era of diadochi. The earliest information about this relates to a gift presented about 305 BC. e. the founder of the state, Mauryev, Tsar Sandrokottos (Chandragupta) Seleucus I Nikator.
And only Strabo, who lived at the turn of the era, speaks about the tiger in more detail.
Faced with people, the tiger became an inhabitant of arenas and menageries. PHOTO IGOR AK. [email protected]
Talking about the tiger, A.E. Bram writes that “he was not known to the Romans before the Punic Wars. When they extended their rule in Asia, the Parthians delivered them tigers. Pliny writes that Scaurus was the first to show the tiger in a cage to the Romans in 743 from the founding of Rome, that is, in 10 BC. Emperor Claudius already had four tigers, and starting from this time they often appear in Rome, Heliogabal harnessed them to his chariot when he portrayed Bacchus. "
According to information cited by N. N. Nepomnyashchy in his book "Chariots in the Desert," in the middle of the 3rd century AD e. during the reign of Emperor Philip Arab, twenty-two elephants, ten deers, ten tigers, ten hyenas, seventy lions, ten giraffes and ten wild horses, thirty leopards, one rhino, one hippo and twenty zebras were once killed in the arena. But in general, in imperial Rome, the tiger was rather an expensive curiosity, and for no reason they didn’t allow it to be killed - for example, they were not allowed to fight gladiators, but were only set against unarmed captives.
Heraldic tiger (tyger) - a creature that has nothing to do with a real beast.
Amur tiger on the front coat of arms of the Primorsky Territory.
Coat of arms of the Jewish Autonomous Region.
The modern coat of arms of Khabarovsk (1991).
If in the Greco-Roman literary tradition the tiger is a symbol of indomitable rage, passion and sensuality, then in the heraldic interpretation it is “out of luck”. It is difficult to imagine something more unlike an animal prototype than a heraldic tiger (it is called tyger unlike a real tiger, called tiger) fictional creature with a wolf body, a lion's mane and tail and a beak-shaped upper jaw.
Some Late Antique authors emphasized the feminine principle in the tiger. So, Claudian described the following method of catching cubs: a kitten must be stolen and, taking it away, scatter the fragments of a mirror behind it. The tigress, having discovered the loss, will immediately, of course, rush into pursuit, but her female vanity is so great that she will certainly stop in front of the mirror to admire her reflection, and completely forget about the cub.
Tiger in the jungle. ESTAMP P. RANSON. 1893
In ancient Roman art, they usually depicted not a tiger, but a tigress. Together with her, as a rule, we find a lion - as a contrast. The tiger represented passion, and the lion - the mind. How can one not recall the identification of the tiger with the female principle of Yin in China!
The image of the tiger is being exploited with might and main.
The bronze emblem of Primorye is “registered” in the center of Vladivostok.
It is interesting that the “female” grammatical categories in relation to the tiger are characteristic not only of the speech of the taiga inhabitants of the Ussuri Territory. Even in the ancient period, the noun “tiger” (from lat. tigris, Greek. Tiypi?) Was precisely the feminine and in Latin poetry the “arrow” had the additional meaning.
The etymology of the word "amba" is also noteworthy, the name by which the tiger is known to the Amur tribes of the natives. In the Manchu dialect, “amban” means “general,” “lord,” “great,” which corresponds to the position of the tiger in the complex Far Eastern system of the universe.
Tiger: words and literature
The images of the tiger in literary works and its interpretation are multifaceted and diverse. Of course, the first thing that comes to mind is the famous lines of William Blake:
Tiger, oh tiger, light burning
In the depths of the midnight thicket!
Whose immortal hand
Is your formidable image created? 4
Tyger! Tyger! burning bright: / In the forests of the night: / What immortal hand or eye: / Could frame thy fearful symmetry?
They attract attention, first of all, by the unusual and at the same time unnatural comparisons. It was previously said that it is difficult to discern a tiger in its very effective camouflage color among the multicolor jungle and Far Eastern taiga. So a tiger can stand out with a color spot only against the background of the gloomy squalor of a menagerie or being thrown in the form of a hide on the floor of the fireplace room. As such, the poet most likely watched him.
Tiger and buffalo. PICTURE A. RUSSO. 1891
No less interesting is the ancient Chinese metaphor, in which the destruction of society is compared with the hunting of the tiger "Yin" in the bamboo grove "Yang", which can be interpreted as the unhindered spread of Darkness that has invaded the Light.
In European culture, the beginning of the perception of the tiger as a carrier of threat and destructive beginning was laid by Virgil, in whom Rome, mired in vices, was called "a desert teeming with tigers."
Here, however, the great poet of antiquity, obviously, confuses the tiger (forest dweller) with a lion (inhabitant of the savannah and semi-desert).
Mowgli and Sher Khan. PERSONNEL FROM THE MAUGLI SERIES OF CARTOONS (SOYUZMULTFILM, 1967–1971, MOD. R. Davydov)
Perhaps one of the best literary images of a tiger absolutely hostile to the human tribe was created by R. Kipling. His Sher Khan bears the features of the mythological evil spirit of the Muslim world, which, however, is not surprising if we recall that the formation of Kipling as a writer occurred precisely in the Muslim region of India. It is probably no coincidence that his cannibal tiger bears the name of an Afghan usurper in the Indian throne, who overthrew the second ruler of the Mughal dynasty, Humayun, in 1540. To strengthen his resemblance to the medieval leader of the harsh rebels, the Jungle Book repeatedly emphasizes that the tiger behaves as if the Jungle Law does not apply to him - which is why he suffers a defeat in the fight against the "frog" Mowgli and a herd of buffalo.
View of Sher Khan. PHOTO IGOR AK. [email protected]
In Japanese culture, the veneration of a tiger, which, apparently, at the same time as a person never lived on the islands of the Japanese archipelago, came from China.
Here in the Middle Ages it was believed that if a person even simply washed his face with water, which once reflected the head of a tiger, his spirit would strengthen and his courage would increase. In addition, a similar procedure was supposed to protect him from illness.
Tsuba - the guard of the Japanese sword with images of tigers.
Valorous and virtuous samurai was often identified with the tiger, which can be explained only by the lack of awareness of the Japanese about the characteristics of the behavior of the beast. The fact is that such “tiger” qualities of a warrior, such as courage, possession of martial arts and rage in battle, according to the Bushi-do code, must obey a sense of duty and devotion to the daimyo master. But the awareness of his duty and devotion to the tiger - the individual predator - are not the most developed character traits ... The tiger as a symbol of crazy courage (or, according to some, aggression) is so deeply rooted in the minds of the Japanese that even a conditional signal of an unexpected attack on Pearl -Harbor they encoded his name. And on the memorable morning of December 7, 1941, breaking the radio silence, the now world-famous, triumphant “Torah! Torah! Torah ”(“ Tiger! Tiger! Tiger! ”).
This work is presumably in 'public domain' status. If this is not the case and posting the material violates someone else’s rights, then let us know.