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International Tiger Day: 20 facts about tigers you never knew

Friday, July 29, marks World Tiger Day. As the country’s national animal, here are 10 facts about the beast you may not have known:

  • The tiger population in India is the largest in the world. India has 2,226 tigers or 70% of the global tiger population.
  • The global population has grown 22% since 2011 to 3,890 tigers
  • Tigers are the largest cat species in the world, reaching a length of up to 3.3 metres and weighing up to 300kgs. Tigers eat up to 60 pounds of food in a sitting
(Image: weebly.com)
(Image: weebly.com)
  • A tiger’s hind legs are longer than its front legs, giving it the ability to leap up to 10 metres forward.
  • A group of tigers is called an ambush or a streak.
  • Rare white tigers carry a gene that is only present in around 1 in every 10,000 tigers.
White Bengal Tiger (Image: trekearth.com)
White Bengal Tiger (Image: trekearth.com)
  •  If you shave a tiger, you will still be able to see its stripes!
  •  The stripes on each tiger are unique, like human fingerprints.
  • The Bengal tiger is also the national animal of Bangladesh.
  • A tiger’s hearing is nearly five times better than ours.
  • Its night vision is up to six times better than a humans.
  • Tigers’ short-term memory alone lasts about thirty times longer than humans’
  • The Bengal tiger can run at speeds up to 65 kilometres, leap nearly 6 metres, jump 5 metres vertically swim for nearly 6 kilometres and drag their prey for almost half a mile, even if its heavier than itself.
(Image: animalsadda.com)
(Image: animalsadda.com)
  • Tigers can bite through the bones of their prey; its canine teeth have pressure-sensing nerves so it knows exactly where to deliver the killing bite to their prey.
  • A tiger’s roar can be heard as far as three kilometres away.
  • One in every 10 hunts are successful for a tiger.
  • Tigers can tell the age, gender, and reproductive condition of other tigers by subtleties in the smell of urine markings
  • Tiger penises do not become erect when aroused. Instead, they contain a bone (called a baculum) and are covered with barbs which help maintain connection during copulation.
(Image: pinimg.com)
(Image: pinimg.com)
  • To show happiness, tigers squint or close their eyes.
  • Unlike many other animals, tigers do not drink water by lapping it up on the top of their tongue, due to their tongue bristles. Instead, they cup the back of their tongue to flick water droplets into the air, which they then close their mouth over.

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